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Flipkart's Binny Bansal quits after investigation into allegation of 'serious personal misconduct'

The allegation wasn't substantiated in the probe, which however found other lapses, Walmart said

Harichandan Arakali
Published: Nov 13, 2018 10:02:36 PM IST
Updated: Nov 14, 2018 12:54:18 PM IST

Flipkart's Binny Bansal quits after investigation into allegation of 'serious personal misconduct'Binny Bansal
Image: Pradeep Gaur/Mint via Getty Images

Flipkart Group CEO Binny Bansal has resigned after an investigation into an allegation of serious personal misconduct, Walmart, which purchased the Indian ecommerce company earlier this year, said in a statement on Tuesday.

“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,” Walmart said in the statement. “Nevertheless, we had a responsibility to ensure the investigation was deliberate and thorough. 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.”

Binny Bansal co-founded Flipkart with Sachin Bansal (no relation) over a decade ago and the duo built the business into India’s largest ecommerce company that can take credit for changing the face of retail in the country. Sachin Bansal, who was group chairman of Flipkart, quit at the time it was sold to Walmart in May. Walmart concluded the $16 billion deal — which valued Flipkart at $22 billion — in August.

A succession plan, which was already in the works because Binny Bansal had been contemplating a transition for some time, has now been accelerated, Walmart said in its statement.

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. Ananth Narayanan will continue as CEO of Myntra and Jabong, and will report to Krishnamurthy. Sameer Nigam will continue leading PhonePe as CEO, and both Krishnamurthy and Nigam will report directly to the board, according to the statement.

Walmart added that an IPO for Flipkart remains an aspiration: “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.”