BharatPe and MD co-founder Ashneer Grover to go on voluntary leave amid turmoil

BharatPe co-founder and chief executive Ashneer Grover will go on voluntary leave amid the turmoil, according to a statement from the company.

The development comes amid an ongoing fight between Grover and his wife, and Kotak Mahindra Bank.

“Ashneer Grover has informed the board of directors of his decision to take voluntary leave from BharatPe until the end of March,” the company said.

“Ashneer co-built BharatPe from the ground up and his decision is consistent with his passionate commitment to the future success of the business,” the fintech company added.

“At this time, the Board of Directors 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 every day. “, he added.

BharatPe said the company will be ably led by its CEO Suhail Sameer and the strong management team.

The dispute between Ashneer Grover and Kotak Mahindra Bank over IPO funding has escalated sharply, with the bank’s wealth management unit pledging to take legal action over Grover’s use abusive language and threats.

On Jan. 9, Kotak Mahindra Bank said it was pursuing “legal action” against Grover and his wife Madhuri in the abusive calls case.

The lender acknowledged that the couple had sent him a formal notice on October 30, without specifying the reasons.

In a viral clip that emerged online, Grover was heard abusing and threatening to have the Kotak employee killed during an alleged encounter with police over his failure to secure stock financing. in Nykaa’s IPO.

After the audio clip became public, Grover released a statement on Twitter, claiming the clip was fake. “People. Chill! This is a FAKE audio of a scammer trying to extort funds ($240,000 in bitcoins). I refused to buckle. I have more character. And the internet has enough scammers “, said Grover on Twitter. He later deleted the denial from Twitter and LinkedIn.

BharatPe serves more than 75 lakh merchants in 150 cities. The company has already facilitated the disbursement of loans totaling more than 3,000 crore to its merchants since its launch. BharatPe has raised over $650 million in equity and debt to date.

Its investors include Tiger Global, Dragoneer Investment Group, Steadfast Capital, Coatue Management, Ribbit Capital and others.

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