Former Paytm executive, Sonia Dhawan has joined the private equity firm SAIF Partners as an Advisor of Corporate Communications, where she will be helping SAIF’s portfolio companies with their media strategy.
Sonia Dhawan confirmed the development to YourStory.
Sonia is expected to work closely with all of SAIF’s portfolio companies, advising them end-to-end on their media and marketing efforts. Some of these startups which Sonia will be advising includes Paytm, Facebook-backed Meesho, Y-Combinator-backed ClearTax, Rivigo, Swiggy, as well as Tiger Global-backed tea café chain, Chaayos.
Earlier, Sonia was the Vice President of Corporate Communications at Paytm’s gaming platform, First Games (earlier Gamepind), where she was helping Paytm’s subsidiary with its media strategy.
Before that, she was part of a women-only social community platform, SHEROES, which she joined in June last year.
At SHEROES, Sonia was helping other technology companies and startups (associated with SHEROES) with their public relations and corporate communications practice, and in the process, provided her expertise across branding to scale these entities.
Sonia is known for her work with Paytm and was heading the corporate communications and public policy for the Noida-based payments behemoth, spending close to 10 years at the firm. Before that, she was with the Times Internet Ltd. in Noida.
In October 2018, Noida police arrested three employees of fintech major Paytm, one of them being Sonia, in an alleged extortion case involving the company's Founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma, which led to Sonia spending five months in jail before being let out on bail.
Currently, SAIF Partners is in its sixth fund in India, and counts startups like Paytm (led by One97 Communications); online ticketing platform, MakeMyTrip; foodtech unicorn, Swiggy; logistics unicorn, Rivigo; home service startup, UrbanClap, as part of its portfolio.
In October 2019, Facebook India also announced its collaboration with the venture capital fund in a bid to strengthen its commitment to enable the growth of small and medium businesses (SMBs) and entrepreneurship in the country.
(Edited by Suman Singh)