November 27, 2022

BharatPe co-founder Grover on voluntary leave till March – Times of India

NEW DELHI: In a surprise move, Ashneer Grover, co-founder and MD at BharatPe, who had sent a legal notice to banker Uday Kotak and to three members of its senior leadership team, on Wednesday stepped back from his responsibilities at the well-funded fintech company.
Grover on Wednesday informed the BharatPe board of his decision to take voluntary leave till March-end, said the company. The decision to relinquish control temporarily, however, was forced upon Grover by some of the company’s investors, sources said.
Grover said in a statement that he will return on or before April 1 this year and he will be using the time off to rejuvenate. The development comes close on the heels of Vishal Garg, the Indian-origin founder and CEO of SoftBank-backed mortgage startup Better, coming back after a “break” after firing 900 employees via Zoom.
“Rahul Yadav, founder of Housing, was moved out due to unruly behaviour. Investors are starting to call out temperamental startup founders, who build a toxic workplace. In this case, they want dust to settle,” said a source.
“For now, the board has accepted Ashneer’s decision, which we agree is in best interests of the company, our employees and investors, and the millions of merchants we support each day,” said BharatPe. “BharatPe will continue to be ably led by our CEO Suhail Sameer and our strong management team.”
In the legal notice sent to Kotak on October 30, while Grover and his wife Madhuri accused the bank of failing to provide financing and allocating shares to them during Nykaa’s IPO on October 28, they claimed Kotak had provided financing for the same to Sameer. The duo sought compensation, claiming that they planned to invest Rs 500 crore in Nykaa through the bank’s IPO financing services. Kotak Mahindra Bank on January 9 threatened to initiate legal action against the Grovers for alleged use of unparliamentary language and threat to the lender’s employees.

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