Paytm Mall has announced the promotion of Rudra Dalmia to executive director and has also appointed the former SVP to the board of the company. The company said Dalmia would be leading the company’s efforts to further strengthen the company’s offline-to-online (O2O) business while ensuring steady growth across the board.
Dalmia joined the company earlier in 2019 as a senior vice president for finance and business and brought with him over 20 years of experience in fintech and investment banking.
Dalmia’s appointment comes at a time when Paytm Mall is in the midst of tight competition with Reliance Jio’s imminent entry in this space, and the expansion of ecommerce giants Amazon and Flipkart in the O2O commerce sector.
Paytm Mall claimed to have reduced costs by 90% while registering a 10% growth in its GMV, under Dalmia’s leadership. Dalmia had initiated a new O2O revenue line that now contributes over 60% of GMV by partnering with global brands such as LG, IFB, and Samsung for the appliances category in the O2O sector.
The new O2O revenue line is built on a tech platform focussed around AI-led technology solutions to bring in incremental sales for offline retailers through Paytm Mall. Dalmia will expand this division and strengthen the management team with new hires.
Dalmia said Paytm Mall’s approach to cutting costs can be a go-to strategy for growth-stage startups, and companies should replace chasing vanity metrics with real efficiencies as a gauge for valuation. “This mantra will have to be followed by all the hyper-growth startups as they reach scale in a growing market — rationalise costs, find profitable ways to grow, stay competitive and continue to grow the top line by focusing on their core business.”
An MBA from Cornell University, Dalmia was the country head and MD of Saxobank India, before joining Paytm. He has also held leadership positions including the directorship of Dawnay Day International, a £10 Bn PE fund and country head position at eBookers Shared Services for India.
Paytm founder and CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma lauded Dalmia’s leadership skills and welcomed him to the board. “I know Rudra as a great entrepreneur and a very seasoned executive since long back.”
After a torrid few months of slow growth and capital crunch, Dalmia’s appointment is a sign of optimism within Paytm and Paytm Mall. This year alone Paytm has witnessed the exit of Bharati Balakrishnan, Vikram Kher, Manjunath CK, Ankush Gandotra, Vikas Garg, Amit Sinha and Kiran Vasireddy from the company. The company has also been embroiled in a fraud cashback scheme orchestrated by some employees and select vendors, following which it had laid off some portions of its staff.