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Last Updated : Nov 17, 2018 02:47 PM IST | Source:

Rejig at Flipkart after Binny Bansal's exit may lead to Ananth Narayanan's departure

The conflict of interest arises from the fact that Flipkart already has its own fashion vertical -- Flipkart Fashion -- which is headed by Rishi Vasudev

Priyanka Sahay

Moneyconrol News

Binny Bansal's exit from Flipkart may lead to other senior executives like Ananth Narayanan leaving the company, according to at least three key people.

Under the new company structure implemented on November 13, Narayanan, who heads fashion portals Myntra and Jabong, will have to report to Flipkart's Chief Executive Officer Kalyan Krishnamurthy.


The conflict of interest arises from the fact that Flipkart already has its own fashion vertical -- Flipkart Fashion -- which is headed by Rishi Vasudev.

"If Ananth has to report Kalyan, he will also not stay for long because Kalyan already has Rishi Vasudev who manages fashion," said one of the sources quoted above.

Vasudev runs Flipkart Fashion and there have always been differences between the two entities because of preferential treatment being given to one and not the other.

During last year's Big Billion Days, Flipkart Group claimed 80 percent market share in the online fashion segment with three brands -- Flipkart Fashion, Myntra and Jabong -- under its umbrella.

However, this year, while Flipkart Fashion claimed a market share of more than 50 percent on its own, Myntra and Jabong didn't participate in the Big Billion Days sale and held their own sales called Big Fashion Days.

The issue is also about different work styles. While Narayanan was seen to be closer to Bansal, Krishnamurthy has a different style of working.

"He had a good three year run. Probably he would hang around for some more time. But then he would start looking around because Kalyan will start taking charge and control. So may be the whole professional satisfaction level of Ananth will take a hit and people like him will not stick around in a company just for salary," said another person quoted above.

Emails sent to Myntra and Flipkart evinced the following response:

"We are excited with the progress we are making at Myntra and Jabong and their business growth. The teams are well focused on bringing the best selection for consumers, and executing the existing strategy."

"As previously announced, Kalyan will continue to serve as CEO of Flipkart, while Ananth will continue providing great leadership as CEO of Myntra /Jabong. He will report into Kalyan and the companies will still operate as independent platforms under the Flipkart group."

Narayanan had joined Myntra as its CEO in October 2015. The company acquired rival Jabong in July 2016 in a discounted deal of $70 million, which helped them achieve the majority market share in the fashion segment due to the absence of a strong rival in the market.

In an interaction with Moneycontrol in April, Narayanan had said that the plan was to retain both brands -- Myntra and Jabong -- and merge common functions such as finance and technology, among others.

Flipkart Group CEO Binny Bansal resigned after an independent probe into an allegation of serious personal misconduct on November 13.

While Walmart did not specify the exact nature of the charges against Bansal, a top source told Moneycontrol that the development pertains to a complaint from a female colleague.

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First Published on Nov 15, 2018 11:30 am
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