Snapdeal’s CFO and general counsel Anup Vikal quits
Photo Credit: Reuters

Anup Vikal, chief financial officer of online retailer Snapdeal and general counsel of its parent firm Jasper Infotech Pvt. Ltd, has resigned, a company spokesperson said.

Vikal will be joining Essar Oil, the refining arm of Essar Group that was sold to a consortium led by Russia's Rosneft, as CFO, people aware of the development told VCCircle.

"It has been a privilege to lead the finance and legal teams at Snapdeal through a series of intense and crucial activities around divestments, profitability and investor relations... I am confident that Snapdeal will continue to lead in its journey of efficient and profitable growth," Vikal said.

Vikal joined Snapdeal in October 2015, taking over from Aakash Moondhra. He previously served as CFO at telecom firm Aircel. Prior to Aircel, he had a short stint at budget carrier IndiGo’s parent InterGlobe Enterprises, and spent a few years at telecom and data services multinational Colt Technology. He was part of Bharti Airtel’s finance team for around seven years before joining Colt. He is a mechanical engineer from NIT, Surat, and a business administration graduate from South Gujarat University.

“Anup has done sterling work at Snapdeal, building high levels of governance and helping structure various transactions of importance... He has led the finance function with distinction, contributing immensely in furthering the profitability initiatives,” Kunal Bahl, chief executive and co-founder of Snapdeal, said.

The development was first reported by The Economic Times.

Vikal’s departure comes after the four-member founding team of Unicommerce eSolutions Pvt. Ltd, Snapdeal’s technology solutions arm, quit in August. Ankit Pruthi, Karun Singla, Vibhu Garg and Manish Gupta were with the company for a stipulated period as per the terms of acquisition of Unicommerce by Snapdeal in 2015.

Unicommerce’s co-founders left the firm after Snapdeal called off its months-long merger talks with Flipkart. The e-tailer opted to tweak its business model, cut costs and slash headcount in a bid to revive its fortunes.

Snapdeal witnessed a string of top-level exits soon after the merger talks fell through, besides increased employee attrition. Its vice president of product Pradeep Desai, vice president of engineering Viraj Chatterjee, and head of IT Gaurav Gupta quit the company, news agency ANI had reported in early August.

Digvijay Ghosh and Rahul Jain, business heads of FMCG and general merchandise divisions, respectively, had resigned too, the report added.

After calling off the merger talks with Flipkart towards the end of July, Snapdeal founders Bahl and Rohit Bansal wrote to the company’s employees explaining their decision and how they planned to turn Snapdeal around. “We firmly believe in our new direction – Snapdeal 2.0 – part of which is a laser focus on being a champion for all sellers in India, enabling anyone to set up a store online in a few minutes and focusing on providing large selection of products at great prices to consumers,” they had said in a letter to Snapdeal’s employees.

In February, the e-tailer had laid off 500-600 employees across the e-commerce marketplace and its subsidiaries, mobile wallet FreeCharge and logistics wing Vulcan Express.

The company had sold its digital payments arm FreeCharge to private-sector lender Axis Bank for Rs 385 crore ($60 million) in July.

Last month, VCCircle had exclusively reported that Snapdeal injected $23.7 million into its logistic arm Vulcan Express, which the e-commerce firm wants to sell off as well to fund its marketplace platform. VCCircle had reported that Vulcan Express received $5.68 million (Rs 36.5 crore) from Jasper Infotech in June.

Earlier this month, Quickdel Logistics, the parent of e-commerce-focused logistics firm GoJavas, sent a legal notice of Rs 300 crore (around $45.9 million) to Snapdeal founders Bahl and Bansal and Jasper Infotech.

Snapdeal stole confidential business information such as data on employees and service vendors, The Times of India reported quoting Anand Rai, who had acquired Snapdeal’s stake in GoJavas and merged it with his Pigeon Express.

Snapdeal held a 49% stake in GoJavas and the founders of the company had sold it to Rai in a fire sale in August 2016.

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