Binny Bansal is leaving Flipkart but no one knows exactly why

Image: AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi
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One of India’s most prominent tech entrepreneurs stepped down from his venture today (Nov. 13) for ambiguous reasons.

Binny Bansal, co-founder of Flipkart and CEO of the Flipkart Group, has resigned from the Indian e-commerce major, the company said in a joint statement with its new owner Walmart. The resignation is effective immediately.

“His decision follows an independent investigation done on behalf of Flipkart and Walmart into an allegation of serious personal misconduct. He strongly denies the allegation…While the investigation did not find evidence to corroborate the complainant’s assertions against Binny, it did reveal other lapses in judgement, particularly a lack of transparency, related to how Binny responded to the situation. Because of this, we have accepted his decision to resign,” the statement said.

Bansal founded Flipkart in 2007 with Sachin Bansal, his friend from the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi.

Sachin Bansal remained the CEO of Flipkart for most of its life, with Binny Bansal as the chief technology officer. In January 2016, Binny Bansal took over as the CEO as his partner became the company’s executive chairman. A year later, the company named Kalyan Krishnamurthy, its then category design organisation chief, its CEO and Binny Bansal was elevated as CEO of a newly formed entity called Flipkart Group Organisation.

His resignation now marks the end of the founders’ association with Flipkart as Sachin Bansal had resigned immediately following the company’s acquisition by Walmart in May this year.

“Binny has been contemplating a transition for some time and we have been working together on a succession plan, which has now been accelerated,” the latest statement from Walmart and Flipkart said. “Going forward, Kalyan Krishnamurthy will continue to be CEO of Flipkart, which will now include Myntra and Jabong, continuing to operate as separate platforms within the Flipkart business.”

Flipkart had acquired online lifestyle and fashion portals Myntra in 2014 and Jabong in 2016. Ananth Narayanan will continue to head the two businesses, the statement said.

Despite this sudden leadership upheaval, Walmart said it plans to take Flipkart public in the future.

“As we look ahead, we have full confidence in the strength and depth of leadership across the company. We remain committed to investing for the long-term and are supportive of the leadership team’s desire to evolve into a publicly-traded company in the future,” the statement read.