Exclusive: Logistics startup Rivigo sees senior-level exits

Exclusive: Logistics startup Rivigo sees senior-level exits
Photo Credit: Illustration by: Akshansh Maan/VCCircle

At least two top-level and two mid-level executives have resigned from tech-enabled logistics services provider Rivigo Services Pvt. Ltd in recent months, people familiar with the developments at the Gurgaon-based startup told TechCircle.

Hemant Khandelwal has resigned as the chief technology officer at Rivigo and is serving his notice period, the people said on the condition of anonymity. Head of engineering Swamy Seetharaman has also put in his papers, the people said, without specifying any reason.

The mid-level executives who have resigned include engineering manager Shashank Gautam and Abhishek Mohan from the client services division, the people said.

The developments come to light barely weeks after VCCircle first reported in January that Rivigo had raised $50 million in a Series D round of funding that valued the company at more than $900 million.

Khandelwal, a chemical engineering graduate from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, has been with Rivigo since inception. He told TechCircle in an emailed reply that he is leaving to support his daughter's tennis career. 

Seetharaman, who had joined Rivigo only in October last year, told TechCircle in an email that he resigned to take care of his ailing mother. “I resigned to ensure that a new leader can take over the site leadership and continue to grow and nurture the technology organisation in Bangalore towards achieving Rivigo's mission,” he said.

Rivigo co-founder Gazal Kalra, however, denied that Khandelwal had resigned but said that he had “decided to spend the next 12-18 months in coaching her (daughter)”. 

One of the persons who spoke on the condition of anonymity said Rivigo has been looking for Khandelwal's replacement for at least two months but hasn't found anyone yet.

Mohan, the client services executive, told VCCircle he would be “moving out next month” for “better opportunities”. Gautam quit Rivigo within four months of joining the company. He joined Flipkart’s payments unit, PhonePe, in February, according to his LinkedIn profile. He couldn’t be immediately reached for comments.

A second person who spoke on the condition of anonymity said that Rivigo’s chief people officer, Nitin Sethi, may also move out. TechCircle couldn’t verify this information. In an email, Sethi said: “Just wanted to let you know that I still continue to be at Rivigo.”

Rivigo was founded in 2014 by Deepak Garg and Gazal Kalra. Garg is an IIT Kanpur alumnus who was working with McKinsey & Company before co-founding the venture. Kalra, a Stanford Graduate School of Business alumna, also had a stint at McKinsey.

Rivigo offers pan-India delivery services to e-commerce, pharmaceutical, automobile, cold-chain and fast-moving consumer goods companies. 

In April 2015, SAIF Partners had pumped in $9.6 million (then Rs 61.8 crore) in a Series A round. The multi-stage investment firm followed it up with an infusion of $30 million (then Rs 200 crore) as part of a Series B round in December the same year. Other investors had also taken part in the round.

A little over a year ago, Rivigo was valued at $500 million in a Series C round that saw private equity firm Warburg Pincus come in as the sole investor to pick up a 15% stake.

Rivigo’s revenue for 2016-17 shot up to Rs 401.8 crore from Rs 149 crore in the previous financial year, filings with the Registrar of Companies showed. Its net loss widened substantially to Rs 137 crore from just Rs 5.5 crore as total expenses tripled to Rs 525 crore.