CEO returns after Zoom firings; BharatPe MD takes leave of absence CEO returns after Zoom firings; BharatPe MD takes leave of absence

As the CEO of digital mortgage outfit returns to work after time off following questions about his behaviour, the boss of another fintech unicorn, BharatPe, is taking his own leave of absence amid chatter about his conduct.

In an internal memo first reported by CNBC, the board confirmed that founder Vishal Garg is returning to his position around a month after taking time off at the board's request.

Garg caused uproar after a video emerged of him firing 900 employees in a Zoom call. To add insult to injury, days after the firings Garg posted messages on anonymous professional network Blind, saying many of the affected employees were "stealing" by "working an average of 2 hours a day while clocking 8 hours+ a day".

Since the Zoom call, other details have emerged about Garg's volatile behaviour, with staffers reporting inappropriate language and a culture of fear. Meanwhile, Garg called Howard Newman of the investment firm Pine Brook Partners "sewage" and an "ingrate and a thug and a miserable miser," after Newman questioned's decision to go public via a Spac rather than a more traditional route.

In the new memo, the board says: “As you know, Better’s CEO Vishal Garg has been taking a break from his full-time duties to reflect on his leadership, reconnect with the values that make Better great and work closely with an executive coach,”

It continues: "Vishal will be resuming his full-time duties as CEO. We are confident in Vishal and in the changes he is committed to making to provide the type of leadership, focus and vision that Better needs at this pivotal time."

Meanwhile, Ashneer Grover, the co-founder and managing director of Indian merchant payment operation BharatPe is taking a two month leave of absence amid questions about his conduct.

Grover says he is taking time off to "rejuvenate and refresh" after working relentlessly for five years. Says BharatPe in a statement: "For now, the Board has accepted Ashneer's decision which we agree is in the best interests of the company, our employees and investors, and the millions of merchants we support each day."

However, the decision comes shortly after a recording of a phone call involving Grover and an employee at Kotak Mahindra Bank appeared on social media. In the call, Grover appears to use abusive language and make threats in response to the bank refusing him financing to buy shares in a firm's IPO.

On Twitter, Grover called the recording fake but later deleted the tweet. In January, the bank said it is pursuing legal against Grover and his wife over the issue.

Comments: (0)