In yet another senior management reshuffle since Walmart acquisition, ecommerce marketplace Flipkart is ready to give a board seat to chief executive, Kalyan Krishnamurthy.
In a report, business intelligence company Paper.vc has noticed that the number of directors is being expanded to 11 from the existing nine following negotiations between Walmart and Flipkart’s minority shareholders on the future direction of the company.
The report noted that these two new directors are designated as independent directors. According to the filings in Singapore by Flipkart’s holding company on September 20, Walmart holds three seats, four independent directors including Lee Fixel, formerly of Tiger Global and James Mitchell from Tencent; and founder nominee Binny Bansal.
The report added that after making changes in the constitution of the board, there is a possibility that Flipkart’s CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy is being elevated to the board. There could also be changes in the senior management team reporting to Krishnamurthy, it added.
The Management Changes Post-Walmart Acquisition
In May 2018, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son mistakenly announced the deal of Walmart acquiring 77% stake in Flipkart for $16 Bn. The official deal happened in August, but by then, Flipkart cofounder Sachin Bansal had been forced out.
Soon after acquisition, Flipkart cofounder and group CEO Binny Bansal made a sudden exit from Flipkart after an allegation of “serious personal misconduct” came to light in November. Even though the following investigation did not find any evidence to support the allegation, Walmart said there were “lapses in judgement” on how the situation was handled.
However, he was not reinstated. In November, at least 20 senior executives at Flipkart reportedly floated their resumes to explore job opportunities. Since then, the company had been in restructuring mode.
In January, Myntra-Jabong chief Ananth Narayanan announced his exit and was replaced by Amar Nagaram. In April, reports surfaced of Krishnamurthy’s exit, however, he strongly denied it.
Krishnamurthy’s association with Flipkart has been a rough sail. He first worked with Flipkart in 2013-14 as its first interim chief financial officer and the categories’ head before leaving the organisation in November 2014. Later, Binny Bansal brought him back to the company in June 2016. Within six months, he took over as CEO replacing Binny, who was promoted to Group CEO. However, the company’s Group CEO position came to Krishnamurthy after Bansal left in November 2018.
With Krishnamuthy having sailed Flipkart’s boat for the longest time through tumultuous times, a board seat may be the long-awaited bonus for the man himself.