Myntra CEO Ananth Narayanan is next in line to leave the storied ecommerce company, just days after Flipkart Chairman and Group CEO Binny Bansal's sudden exit resulted in a reshuffle of the top management, sources close to the matter told YourStory.
Update: A company spokesperson, while not replying directly to our questions, only said, "Ananth Narayanan continues to lead the team." The statement also said that Myntra's independence as a business would be preserved. "Myntra team to continue to operate independently to achieve even greater success – we will continue to lead the market, serve our customers, and do what we do best," it added.
On Tuesday, Flipkart Co-founder Binny Bansal resigned from the company following an investigation into allegations of ‘personal misconduct’. Binny’s departure comes just months after Co-founder Sachin Bansal (no relation) was reportedly forced to exit the company after its sale to Walmart earlier in the year.
Following Binny's resignation, Walmart announced that Ananth Narayanan would continue as CEO of Myntra and Jabong, but that he would now report into Flipkart CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy.
Ananth, who is credited with leading the turnaround at Myntra, was earlier reporting to Binny. Sources say Ananth's departure from Myntra was inevitable as it was well known that he did not share the best of relations with Kalyan, his new boss.
Myntra CFO Dipanjan Basu is also reportedly set to also leave the company along with Ananth, who is one of the most respected CEOs in the online retail space, having steered Myntra to growth after its app-only strategy backfired badly. Ananth was earlier with consulting firm McKinsey & Company and came to Myntra as CEO in October 2015. He took over from Myntra co-founder Mukesh Bansal.
On Tuesday, Walmart also said that Sameer Nigam would continue leading PhonePe as CEO, and that both Kalyan and Sameer would report directly to the board. Sameer co-founded PhonePe in December 2015, after which it was acquired by Flipkart in April 2016.
Jabong CEO Gunjan Soni also recently resigned from the company.
Binny may have resigned from Flipkart following the investigation into the allegations against him, but according to a Walmart statement, he had been considering the move for "some time" now. The statement also said that the investigation had not found evidence to corroborate the complainant’s assertions after the investigation.
"Binny has been contemplating a transition for some time and we have been working together on a succession plan, which has now been accelerated," Walmart said in a statement.
Binny too had denied the allegations of personal misconduct. Indian entrepreneurs expressed shock and dismay at Binny’s sudden resignation from his position at Flipkart. Still, investors said the leadership change at Flipkart will not hamper the growth of the startup ecosystem, although it highlights the need for greater transparency and disclosure among startups.