India’s largest e-commerce portal has just lost its CEO. As per reports coming in from a number of sources, Binny Bansal, one of Flipkart’s co-founders has quit from his post of Flipkart Group CEO with immediate effect. His resignation comes in the wake of an internal investigation conducted by Flipkart and Walmart (which acquired Flipkart earlier this year for a mammoth USD 16 billion) into matters of “serious personal misconduct.”
The matter itself has not been revealed. Bansal himself has denied the allegation, and as per a joint statement from Flipkart and Walmart: “While the investigation did not find evidence to corroborate the complainant’s assertions against Binny, it did reveal other lapses in judgement, particularly a lack of transparency, related to how Binny responded to the situation. Because of this, we have accepted his decision to resign.” The statement goes on to say: “Binny has been an important part of Flipkart since co-founding the company, but recent events risked becoming a distraction and Binny has made a decision to step down.” It further adds that Bansal had been “contemplating a transition,” because of which the companies had been working on a succession plan, “which has now been accelerated.”
Bansal’s resignation is a severe setback to Flipkart, given his close association with the brand and the fact that he was seen as its face in many circles. Needless to say, speculation is rife about the “misconduct” which spurred the investigation, which in turn saw him put in his papers. We will let you know more as the story develops.
Kalyan Krishnamurthy will continue to be the CEO of Flipkart, and Ananth Narayanan will be CEO of Myntra and Jabong, but will report to Krishnamurthy, as will Sameer Nigam, the CEO of PhonePe.