Ex-Flipkart exec Sanjiv Saddy joins Ola as SVP of Corporate Affairs

At Ola, ex-Flipkart exec Sanjiv will be responsible for building deep relationships with key authorities, government agencies, and other related stakeholders.

Ride hailing platform Ola has named former Flipkart executive Sanjiv Saddy as its Senior Vice President for Corporate Affairs.

"Sanjiv will be responsible for building deep relationships with key authorities, government agencies, and other related stakeholders and in closely engaging and working with them as a business," Ola co-founder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal said in an email to the employees.

"Consequently, all our regional corporate affairs and law enforcement leads will report to him," he wrote.

An Ola spokesperson confirmed the appointment.

Saddy has over 35 years of experience in corporate affairs and government relations, business development, and finance. In his previous role, he was working with Flipkart, leading its government relations and corporate affairs mandate.

He has also worked with Tata Communications, Emaar MGF Land Ltd and Freightwinds and Travels Ltd, among other companies.

Hi appointment comes a few months after the ride-hailing cab faced several skirmishes with the authorities in Karnataka. In June 2019, the Karnataka government had asked cab aggregators Ola and Uber to stop their pool services immediately in Bengaluru. The decision was imposed during a closed-door meeting by the Karnataka Transport Department with the ride-hailing companies.

While this move may be hailed by driver partners, it brought disappointment to the many commuters who use the pool services.

Ola had faced the same trouble in March 2018, when in a letter the Regional Transport Department issued a notice to ANI Technologies, Ola's parent company, asking it to suspend its app-based cab services in the city. 

The two-page letter stated that the ride-hailing app has been illegally operating the bike-taxi services through alleged 'fake licences'. It also said that the transport department will be suspending the company's licence for the next six months, thus in effect banning all its services. The department's notice also stated that the app-based services are against the Karnataka Motor Vehicles Act. 

It had stated that the car pooling option given by Ola and Uber is illegal under the current Act. However in March itself, the government had withdraw the ban.

(Disclaimer: Additional background information has been added to this PTI copy for context)


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