BharatPe Co-founder Bhavik Koladiya quits
Bhavik Koladiya, Co-founder of fintech unicorn, has left the company he helped build. He is the second co-founder to have quit this year after former CEO Ashneer Grover exited in March following allegations of financial mismanagement.
In a report by Mint, Koladiya's problems with BharatPe stemmed from the Grover saga, specifically due to disagreements with current CEO Suhail Sameer.
During the final weeks of his tenure, Grover had implied that Koladiya was not a founder of BharatPe because he had no ownership shares of the company. However, insiders have said that Koladiya was actually removed from the cap table during the early years of the company due to having been convicted of credit card fraud in America in 2015.
Koladiya claims that his ownership shares were held by his co-founders, Ashneer Grover and Shashvat Nakrani, in a gentlemen's agreement to provide him shares if they were ever cashed out.
When Grover publicly claimed that Koladiya was not a founder and had no right to any of his shares, Koladiya prepared to fight him in court. Despite initial backing from the investors and other insiders at the company, Koladiya was asked to withdraw his lawsuit a week before approaching the court by BharatPe.
Company insiders claimed that since they were in the midst of negotiating a deal with Grover, a lawsuit would complicate matters. However, the entire disagreement seems to have soured Koladiya's relationship with BharatPe and current CEO Sameer, to the point that he has left the company.
In a response to the report, a BharatPe spokesperson said, "Bhavik Koladiya has been associated with BharatPe as an independent consultant, guiding our product and technology teams. His contract tenure ended on July 31, 2022 and he expressed his desire to spend time on other assignments outside BharatPe. Bhavik has been one of our biggest advocates and has been an integral part of our journey in becoming one of India’s largest fintech companies. While we wish him the very best, we are also sure he will continue to guide us in future as well."