We bring to you the latest edition of movers and shakers of the week in the Indian startup ecosystem.
At a time when we thought Sundar Pichai has reached the highest point in life that anyone can ever dream of, he touches another milestone. Pichai has been named the new CEO of Alphabet Inc, Google’s parent company.
Cofounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin have stepped aside from day-to-day operations of the company and will continue as cofounders and members of Alphabet’s board. Pichai, who is also a board member, will lead Alphabet alongside his role as CEO of Google and managing Alphabet’s investment in its portfolio including Chronicle, GV, CapitalG, Verily, Loon, X, Waymo and Google Fiber.
In a letter, Page and Brin said that Pichai brings humility and a deep passion for technology to their users, partners and employees every day. They lauded his ability to tackle big challenges through technology. They further said that there is no better person to lead Google and Alphabet into the future.
Here’s a look at the other important movers and shakers of the week
OYO Leadership Reshuffle
Gurugram-based hospitality unicorn OYO Hotels and Homes has shuffled its senior leadership team. The company announced that it has elevated India and South Asia CEO, Aditya Ghosh, to the board of directors.
Ghosh joins OYO’s board which comprises of Ritesh Agarwal, Founder & Group CEO, OYO Hotels & Homes; Betsy Atkins, Founder & CEO, Baja Corporation; Munish Varma, Managing Partner, SoftBank Vision Fund; Bejul Somaia, Partner, Lightspeed India Partners Advisors; Mohit Bhatnagar, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital India Advisor among others.
In his new role at the board, Ghosh will provide governance and leadership. He will focus on five key areas: safety and security, customer experience, corporate governance, revenue management and stakeholder communications.
Rohit Kapoor, who was earlier the head of real estate business for OYO, has been elevated to India and South Asia CEO. He will now also manage the operations of over 18K hotels across 500 cities in India and South Asia.
OYO said that over the last year, Kapoor has been overseeing the growth of OYO LIFE – the brand’s long-term rental housing portfolio, as well as, other new real estate businesses in India. Ghosh and Kapoor will be working closely through the coming month to enable a smooth and seamless transition. As part of his new role, Ghosh will continue to remain accessible whenever needed.
The six-year-old company has a portfolio of more than 35,000 hotels and 125,000 vacation homes, and over 1.2 Mn rooms across 80 countries and 800 cities. Its verticals vary from holiday homes, casino hotel and coworking spaces to budget hotels, corporate stays and more.
Licious Appoints Bhaskar Raju Konduru As CTO
Bengaluru-based gourmet meat startup Licious has appointed Bhaskar Raju Konduru as its chief technology officer (CTO). In his new role, Konduru will work towards improving Licious’ technological capabilities, augmenting existing products and establishing newer capabilities.
Bhaskar comes with a deep understanding of the Indian startup space, given his decade-long work at redBus as a founding member, followed by his stints with startups like HelloClass, Pharmeasy, and Housejoy among others.
Founded in 2015 by Abhay Hanjura and Vivek Gupta, Licious operates under the farm-to-fork model and controls the backend supply chain along with control on the cold chain across procurement, processing, storage to the delivery stage.
Murali Nair To Lead Zeta’s Banking Business
Bhavin Turakhia-led fintech startup Zeta has appointed Murali Nair as president for its banking business. He joins Zeta from Visa India, where he was the head of client relationship management. In his new role, Nair will be work towards establishing Zeta as the de-facto platform for the banking and fintech sector in India, providing new-age customer experiences for debit cards, credit cards, current accounts, among others.
With over 26 years of experience in payments and digital products across India, Middle East and Africa, Murali brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to Zeta. Before joining Visa, Nair was senior vice president, market development for Mastercard, South Asia. He was also the CEO of Pinpoint India, a global leader in Loyalty Marketing. During his career, Nair has also held senior positions at Barclays, Deutsche Bank, and Citibank.
Founded in 2015 by Bhavin Turakhia and Ramki Gaddipati, Zeta offers a cloud-native neo-banking platform for the issuance of credit, debit and prepaid products that enable companies to launch engaging retail and corporate products, besides offering digitised solutions to enterprises such as automated cafeteria billing, employee gifting, R&R.
Sidharth Kedia Joins Nodwin Gaming As CEO
Gurugram-based online gaming startup Nodwin Gaming has appointed Sidharth Kedia as the cheif executive officer of the company. Kedia will be based out of Mumbai where he’ll help the company to open the first regional office for Nodwin Gaming.
An economics graduate from Delhi University and a chartered accountant, Kedia is also an alumnus of TRIUM – a global Executive MBA program run jointly by the London School of Economics, Stern – New York University and HEC – Paris.
Kedia started his career in Information Systems Advisory with Ernst & Young in 1998. After which he joined General Electric’s prestigious Finance Management Program in 1999 and post successful completion of the program, moved to a Black Belt- six sigma-role in GE Consumer Finance in Mumbai in 2002.
Founded in 2014, NODWIN is a 50:50 venture between Akshat Rathee, Gautam Virk and Jetsynthesys Pvt. Ltd., and has established relationships with global gaming publishers and platforms including market leaders such as ESL (Turtle Entertainment, GMBH) and Valve Corporation. NODWIN has the exclusive long-term India rights for global partners such as ESL, ESWC among others.
Stay tuned for the next edition of Movers and Shakers of the week!