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IPO-bound Oyo ropes in former SBI chief Rajnish Kumar as strategic group adviser

Kumar will advise the ride-hailing firm on short and long-term strategies and regulatory as well as stakeholder engagement

December 02, 2021 / 06:40 PM IST
Rajnish Kumar, former chairman, State Bank of India (SBI)

Rajnish Kumar, former chairman, State Bank of India (SBI)

Ahead of its initial public offering (IPO), Softbank-backed Oyo has roped in Rajnish Kumar, the former State Bank of India (SBI) chairman, as a strategic group adviser, the hospitality firm said on December 2.

Kumar will advise the company's management on short and long-term strategies, regulatory and stakeholder engagement besides enhancing the brand of the company globally.

"Technology innovations are exciting for both Kumar and us at Oyo. His experience of digitisation and technology-led initiatives for the customers is critical for us as we make a difference to our stakeholders’ lives," Oyo founder and chairman Ritesh Agarwal said.

Kumar, who has spent over 40 years in the financial sector, was recently appointed the chairman of the board of fintech firm BharatPe.

He joined SBI as a probationary officer in 1980 and retired as the chairman in October 2020. He is credited with steering the bank through one of the most difficult periods. YONO, the digital banking platform, was built on his watch.

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Besides BharatPe, Kumar is also on the boards of HSBC Asia Pacific, L&T infotech and Hero Motocorp.

“Ritesh, a first-generation entrepreneur, and his team have created a unique technology platform to make Oyo a household name in the travel sector. I have always been excited about the startups which are bringing a revolutionary change in the Indian economy. Looking forward to working closely with Ritesh and his team in creating value for all stakeholders," Kumar said.

In October, Oyo filed draft documents for $1.2-billion public listing. The company, which was last valued at $9 billion, is targeting a valuation of around $12-14 billion through the IPO.

 
Priyanka Sahay
first published: Dec 2, 2021 03:04 pm

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