Even as the decision by Sachin Bansal (Flipkart co-founder) to acquire DHFL General Insurance (now Navi General Insurance) in January 2020, initially came as a breather for employees of the company, who were earlier unnerved by the liquidity situation of DHFL Group, it hasn’t turned out to be a fruitful one for many. Within five months of the acquisition, Bansal has announced to relocate company headquarter from Mumbai to Bengaluru by December 31, 2020 and has also laid-off over 40 employees (nearly one-fifth of the total employee strength) including the CEO and other senior and mid-management officials.
In a recent webinar address to 123 employees at Navi General Insurance, Bansal said, “Today there were a few layoffs that happened at COCO (brand of Navi General Insurance) and we had to ask a few people to go….This was important to do at this juncture because we are thinking of new strategies for COCO. We had to do people rationalisation activity because not everybody was fitting into the future strategy that we are thinking of,” Bansal said.
He, however, tried to allay fear among the remaining staff and as he said, “Whoever was part of the lay off has been already asked to go and all of you who are present here are not part of that and we want you to continue with Coco and we want you to build your career here,” he said asking them to move to Bengaluru.
The assurance from the chairman and other senior management, however, has done little to instil faith as many feel they may lose their job. “They are asking us to move to Bengaluru. We risk everything when we move from Mumbai to Bengaluru as Bengaluru is not an hub of insurance companies,” said a senior official. While the company did not to respond to an e-mail sent to Sachin Bansal and the company, a source said since Navi is being built as a highly technology-driven financial services company, therefore moving HQ to Bengaluru is a strategic decision. He added as part of this decision and in line with Navi’s future strategy, there were a number of redundancies in roles and these people were ‘let go’.
Bansal said, “There are vacancies at senior and middle management levels that have been created … and it is for all of you to grab that opportunity.” He added he likes to promote people from within the organisation to senior positions instead of going for external hiring.
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