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OYO India CEO and Europe head quitting signals; Major changes ahead of IPO

Gupta and Vaidya are not alone in their departure. Several other top executives, including the company's CTO Ankit Mathuria, have exited Oyo this year.

As Oyo, the renowned hospitality and travel tech startup, gears up for a public listing, it faces a significant leadership shuffle. Ankit Gupta, the India CEO, and Mandar Vaidya, the head of Europe operations, have decided to part ways with the company, according to an official statement. 

Gupta, who joined the unicorn in 2019, served as the India CEO for just over a year before resigning this March. Prior to this, he held the position of CEO of Franchise and Frontier business at the Gurugram-based firm. Vaidya, who also joined Oyo in 2019, was the CXO of South East Asia and Middle East before he took the helm of Europe operations in April 2021. 

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Oyo spokesperson shared

“Ankit Gupta and Mandar Vaidya stepped down from their roles back in March 2023. We take pride in their accomplishments at Oyo and we’re grateful for their leadership,” an Oyo spokesperson shared.

Before their stint at Oyo, both Gupta and Vaidya had impressive careers at McKinsey, a leading management consulting firm. 

Their roles were smoothly transitioned six months ago to Varun Jain, who assumed the position of COO India, and Gautam Swaroop, who took up the role of CEO Vacation Homes,” the company further added. 

Gupta and Vaidya are not alone in their departure. Several other top executives, including the company’s CTO Ankit Mathuria, have exited this year. In a bid to optimize its leadership structure, Oyo also reassigned roles to its top executives, encouraging them to take on multiple responsibilities internally. 

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For instance, Abhinav Sinha, previously the global COO and product division leader, was appointed as the chief product and technology officer. Anuj Tejpal, the global chief merchant officer, was asked to also lead the India merchant team. Shreerang Godbole, the chief service officer, assumed additional responsibilities as the head of the data science division.

These changes coincide with refiling of its draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) via the recently introduced pre-filing route. Founded by Ritesh Agarwal, Oyo reportedly aims to raise $1 billion at a valuation of $2.7 billion, a significant drop from its previous $10 billion valuation, mirroring the ongoing slump in global tech stocks. 

In May, Moody’s predicted that would conclude this financial year with an EBITDA of approximately $50 million-$55 million (or Rs 400-450 crore), driven by a revival in the travel industry. While Moody’s maintained that Oyo’s financial outlook was stable, it warned that Oyo’s rating might be downgraded if the company failed to significantly reduce its cash burn over the next 12-18 months. This essentially implies that Oyo’s current liquidity may not be sufficient to sustain its operations and investments for the coming 2-3 years.

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