After a month of making the headlines for “toxic culture”, mass layoffs, and slowdown in business, OYO founder and chief executive Ritesh Agarwal has now made a public statement marking “reflections of the first month of 2020”.
Agarwal began by saying that he believes OYO is going through its most important phase as it looks to supplement its strong business plans with an uncompromising commitment to building an employee-first culture, with significant investment in continually improving its governance framework.
He spoke about multiple dimensions of the business. Beginning with the layoffs, which have impacted nearly 3K of total 12K employees of the company, Agarwal said that recent efforts at rightsizing the organization have been a significant chapter in the company’s evolution.
“About 69% of the impacted OYOpreneurs opted for outplacement support that OYO offered. We have been in touch with over 48 companies and shared around 900 profiles with them. The positive reception by other companies towards OYOpreneurs has overwhelmed me,” Agarwal said.
The CEO also emphasised on the corporate governance part, talking about multiple appointments the company has made to improve this aspect. He said OYO recently appointed Betsy Atkins, CEO and founder of Baja Corporation, who will chair an ethics and integrity committee on OYO’s board.
In 2019, OYO suffered as business asset owners and hotel partners protested and even took some complaints to police. Agarwal responded to these troubles saying, “Capitalizing on the extensive market-level insights, our focus is to streamline supply so that we deliver on the promise of exceeding expectations of our hotel partners.”
OYO chief said that the India business signed up 800-1200 rooms per day in January 2020 in the franchise business while gaining relative speed. He also said that over 100 hotels, which had ended contracts with OYO, have joined back the platform.
Agarwal said that the company is now present in more than 415 Indian cities with 18K properties.
“We are proactively working on ways to customize agreements and reconcile with owners in the best possible way. A practical and enforceable alignment strategy through centralized operations and communications is being rolled out across geographies through our renewed Service Account Management (SAM) system,” Agarwal said.
Here are some key business insights across markets OYO is present in:
- In South Asia, OYO had over 300K rooms as of December 2019, a 2.1x Y-o-Y increase
- In the US, OYO expanded presence across 39 states with 280 buildings
- In January 2020, sales for OYO Vacation Homes grew 1.9x M-o-M
- In January 2020, OYO served about 6.5 Mn customers in India
- In Southeast Asia, OYO said it has over 3,300 buildings with over 100K rooms
- In the Middle East, OYO grew to over 17K rooms in 32 cities by the end of 2019
- 80% increase in revenue from business-to-business (B2B) or corporate customers in 2019 on Y-o-Y basis
- OYO Brazil now has 400 buildings and while the Mexico business has 334 properties
- OYO Life Japan is now at more than $45M in annualized revenue with over 6K apartments
- At the end of 2019, OYO had 190 hotels in Japan across over 70 cities with more than 5800 rooms
- OYO UK is now more than 200 buildings strong
OYO chief said that the company will be committed to growing OYO the right way. “As we move forward in our journey, we will do so by staying focused on our first principles of ensuring trust, being respectful and resilient at all times,” he added.