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No wonder Flipkart is bleeding. Just look at these ridiculous salaries

Reuters/Abhishek N. Chinnappa
  • Itika Sharma Punit
By Itika Sharma Punit

Co-editor, Quartz India

Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Salaries of Flipkart employees could put you to shame.

In April 2015 to March 2016, India’s largest homegrown e-commerce company paid over Rs10 crore ($1.5 million) each to six of its employees and over a crore each to 101 others, regulatory filings sourced by data platform Tofler shows.

The compensation to these top-paid employees alone takes the company’s remuneration bill to around Rs300 crore.

Six of the highest paid people at Flipkart in fiscal 2016 were:

NameDesignationAge (years)Work experience (years)Remuneration(Rs crore)
Mekin MaheshwariChief people officer36835.3
Ankit Nagori*Chief business officer31421.9
Mukesh Bansal*CEO-commerce platform411821.8
Sameer Nigam*Senior vice-president391017.7
Amod MalviyaChief technology officer35811.7
Rahul Chari *VP – engineering381110.1

* Indicates employees who left during the year.

Amod Malviya and Mekin Maheshwari left their positions in July and September 2015, respectively, and took up advisory roles in the company.

These remunerations include salary, allowances, leave travel allowances, company’s contribution to provident fund, superannuation fund, and gratuity fund, among other things, according to the filing made by Flipkart to the Registrar of Companies (RoC).

Update: Hours after the post was published, Flipkart responded to our query saying, “The remuneration figures cited include a significant portion of liquidated ESOPs that had been accumulated over the years… The law does not require liquidation of ESOP details to be separately stated and the (RoC) filings have been made by disclosing all the particulars mandated by the law.”

These massive payouts were made even as the company was bleeding.

In fiscal 2016, Flipkart Internet (which operates Flipkart) posted a loss of Rs2,306 crore, more than doubled from a year ago. This despite revenue growing around 140% to Rs1,952 crore.

The payouts are also from a period when the Bengaluru-based company was facing devaluation and difficulty in raising fresh funds at preferred valuation.

In March 2016, investor Morgan Stanley trimmed Flipkart’s valuation by 27% to $11 billion. By April 2016, the company had faced rejections from several potential investors, the Mint newspaper reported.

No comparison

Flipkart’s fierce rival Amazon India was pretty modest in comparison.

In fiscal 2016, the highest-paid employee at Amazon Seller Services, the American company’s main unit in India, was Stephen Walter, the HR director for India and China; Walter got Rs4.29 crore. Amazon’s India head Amit Agarwal received Rs3.16 crore.

Below are the 10 highest-paid employees at Amazon Seller Services in fiscal 2016, according to the company’s RoC filing:

(in Rs crore)
Stephen WalterHR director, India & China56324.29
Amit Devendra AgarwalVP India, country manager42193.16
Nitesh Sunder KripalaniDirector, Amazon Video India35152.41
Samir KumarVP, category management44212.27
Mahendra NerurkarGM, Junglee.com41182.17
Kishore ThotaSr. manager marketing43191.96
Gopal PillaiDirector & general manager, Seller Services41201.88
Raghava RaoDirector finance, India45221.83
Rajiv M MehtaCountry manager, Kindle, India41191.73
Kinjal ChoudharyDirector, operations HR India45201.69

“We do not discuss specifics of employee remuneration as these are confidential but Amazon India remains committed to offering its employees competitive, market-benchmarked salaries with a challenging career path and fulfilling work environment,” an Amazon India spokesperson told Quartz.

In fiscal 2016, Amazon’s losses and revenue in India more than doubled to Rs3,572 crore and Rs2,275 crore, respectively.

Correction: Earlier, the story had erroneously mentioned that Amod Malviya is 25 years old. He is 35.

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