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Tuesday, December 07, 2021

Ola restructures organisation to strengthen mobility biz

In an e-mail to employees, Ola Chairman and Group CEO Bhavish Aggarwal informed the staff about the changes.

By: PTI | New Delhi |
October 20, 2021 3:33:18 pm
ola, ola funding, ola fund raiseOla's cab-hailing smartphone app is seen on a mobile phone in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, March 29, 2016. (AP Photo)

Ride hailing platform Ola has restructured the organisation and expanded roles for some of its top leaders as part of efforts to strengthen its mobility business and capture new opportunities.

Besides, Ola’s Chief Financial Officer Swayam Saurabh and Chief Operating Officer Gaurav Porwal are leaving the company.

In an e-mail to employees, Ola Chairman and Group CEO Bhavish Aggarwal informed the staff about the changes.

“Over the last year we have re-architected our mobility business to be much more robust and structurally efficient, enabling strong growth and a rapid return to pre-COVID levels,” he said in the mail, a copy of which was seen by PTI.

He added that Ola’s vehicle commerce business, Ola Cars, has scaled up rapidly to become a large operation, and its Delivery and Financial Services businesses are at key inflection points.

“As we look forward to Ola’s next phase of growth, we are making some key updates to our organisation that will enable us to capture the opportunities that lie ahead,” Aggarwal said.

Ola did not respond to e-mailed queries.

Vinay Bhopatkar – the CEO of Ola Delivery business – will now take on additional responsibilities of the driver and supply ecosystem of the mobility business.

“Vinay who is building our Deliveries business will take on the additional responsibilities for the driver and supply ecosystem of our mobility platform due to the strong synergies between these businesses. It will enable us to further improve driver experience and utilisation,” Aggarwal said.

Ola Chief Marketing Officer Anshul Khandelwal will take on the additional responsibility to drive revenue as well.

Ola Cars CEO Arun Sirdeshmukh will continue in his role, while Group CFO Arun Kumar GR will continue to run the finance function and all the key finance leaders at Ola will now report directly to him.

Aggarwal noted that Ola COO Gaurav Porwal and Ola CFO Swayam Saurabh are leaving the organisation.

“Gaurav, who has run the mobility business for the last year and built a strong foundation during challenging times, will be leaving Ola to pursue other interests…Swayam Saurabh will be moving on to pursue other opportunities in mid December. I wish him the very best for his next endeavour,” he added.

Ola is said to be working towards launching a USD 1-1.5 billion (Rs 7,324-10,985 crore) initial public offering . The company is expected to file the DRHP (Draft Red Herring Prospectus) in the December quarter and is working with select banks, including Citigroup Inc and Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd, to manage the IPO.

The company, however, has not officially commented on the timeline yet.

In September, Ola – which competes with US-based rival Uber – had said its GMV (gross merchandise value) has crossed pre-COVID levels, and the recovery from the second wave had been three times faster compared to that after the first wave.

Ola had also noted that it had added 10 million new users in financial year 2020-21, and that the company is working on onboarding more driver-partners, entering new cities, and building new products to better serve mobility needs post-COVID.

GMV , for Ola, refers to the fare paid by customers for rides.

Like many other industries, the ride hailing sector was adversely impacted by the pandemic as the pandemic and ensuing lockdown dried up demand and ravaged business.

Companies were forced to lay off employees and cut costs to sustain the business.

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