Flipkart, on Monday announced that co-founder Sachin Bansal, who has been the CEO since inception, will now take on the newly-created role of executive chairman while his less prominent co-founder Binny Bansal, who has been the chief operating officer, will be the CEO.
The Bansals, who are unrelated, were at IIT-Delhi around the same time and briefly worked together at Amazon before founding the e-commerce firm as an online bookstore back in 2007.
This major restructuring of its top management - the first such in its eight-year history - will see Mukesh Bansal, who came to Flipkart following the latter's acquisition of Myntra, report to Binny. Mukesh, who was till recently touted as CEO-in waiting of Flipkart, will continue to be chairman of Myntra, which he co-founded, and head Flipkart's commerce platform. He has been given additional responsibility of the overall ads business. The current ads business head Ravi Garikipati will report to Mukesh. Flipkart acquired Myntra in a $330-million deal in May 2014.
The timing of the restructuring - Flipkart is facing intense competition from Amazon even as there is talk of a public listing in the US in the near term - has triggered speculation as to whether more should be read into it. Flipkart said the restructuring was designed to give its strategic objectives a sharper edge and help it become a world-class internet company.
The question still remain unanswered: Why a top management change in Flipkart now?