Exclusive: Freecultr co-founder Sandeep Singh joins Bira91
Sandeep Singh, co-founder of fashion e-commerce portal Freecultr, has quit the company to join craft beer maker B9 Beverages Pvt. Ltd, which sells the Bira91 brand, as marketing director.
“I will be taking care of marketing and alternate channel development at Bira,” Singh told VCCircle.
Singh, who was also the CEO at Freecultr, is the third and last co-founder—and the second this year—to leave the startup. In June, co-founder Rajesh Narkar joined fashion e-tailer Myntra as vice president and brand director. The third co-founder, Sujal Shah, had quit in 2013.
Singh’s exit comes amid reports that Arvind Internet, the online arm of textile maker Arvind Ltd, was in talks to acquire Freecultr.
Freecultr had reportedly shut down its website last month, though Singh was cited as saying in media reports that the site was “not operational due to technical errors.”
Singh confirmed that the firm was in talks for a potential acquisition and said that its operations were on hold. He didn’t give any details.
The portal was started by the trio in December 2011 with backing from Harish Bahl’s Smile Group, which runs a slew of e-commerce sites.
Freecultr’s chief technology officer, Gaurav Gupta, had also quit recently and joined BigFoot Retail Solutions Pvt. Ltd, the startup behind KartRocket.com, as CTO in August.
Bira91, launched in February last year, is available in Delhi, Mumbai, Goa, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Pune and Chandigarh. The company has import and marketing rights from seven breweries and has also tied up with a contract manufacturer in Belgium. It is setting up a new plant in Madhya Pradesh.
In January, Bira raised Rs 40 crore ($6 million) in a Series A round of funding from a group of investors led by Sequoia Capital. The global venture capital firm had also backed Freecultr.
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B9 Beverages Pvt. Ltd. owns and operates a craft beer firm Bira91. It offers products like bira 91 white, bira 91 blonde available in draft and bottle formats. It also offers draft beer dispense network of restaurants and bars across the country. It also imports and distributes a portfolio covering the major beer styles and more than twenty brands including belgian blonde ale of duvel and trappist beers of chimay etc. The company was incorporated in 2012 and is based in New Delhi. It is a subsidiary company of Cerana Beverages Pvt. Ltd.