A founder leaving a large internet company hasn’t been a very common move in the Indian startup ecosystem. Nonetheless, in a similar instance, Zomato’s co-founder Pankaj Chaddah had left the company in 2018 after 10 years.
Swiggy co-founder and chief technology officer Rahul Jaimini is leaving the food delivery startup this month (May) to join edtech startup Pesto Tech as its co-founder. Jaimini along with other Swiggy co-founders Sriharsha Majety and Nandan Reddy, who launched the company back in 2014 – six years after its arch-rival Zomato was launched, had invested in Pesto Tech as angel investors last year. The edtech startup offers online training programmes for software engineers and helps them connect with global technology companies. Jaimini, however, will remain a shareholder and a board member of Tencent and DST Global-backed Swiggy.
Multiple functions such as platform engineering, analytics, IT and labs led by Jaimini will now be headed by Swiggy’s Dale Vaz who is currently the head of engineering and data science. Vaz has been with Swiggy for nearly two years. The company reported Jaimini’s move in a statement. “Although the time has come to move on and pursue other interesting challenges, I will continue to cheer for Harsha, Nandan and the entire Swiggy team as it strives towards delivering unparalleled convenience for consumers across the country,” Jaimini said.
“Over the last 6 months, Rahul had been taken by the future of remote working – especially the chance for India to disrupt the landscape with its access to world-class engineering talent,” said Majety in a company blog post. “He then spoke to Nandan and me about the idea of working full-time with the company. We could tell how excited Rahul was about this, and were fully supportive of his decision.”
A founder leaving a large internet company hasn’t been a very common move in the Indian startup ecosystem. Nonetheless, in a similar instance, Zomato’s co-founder Pankaj Chaddah had left the company in 2018 after 10 years, leaving the other co-founder Deepinder Goyal to take overall charge. Chaddah has reportedly launched a mental fitness company Mindhouse. Another example of founders leaving internet companies is MakeMyTrip wherein its co-founder Sachin Bhatia had left the company in 2010 and launched dating site Truly Madly.
Swiggy has recently raised $156 million from South African internet giant Naspers, along with Meituan Dianping and Hadley Harbour Master Investments. The startup had recently partnered with FMCG majors including HUL, Dabur P&G, Godrej, Marico, Vishal Mega Mart, Adani Wilmers, Cipla etc to deliver essential items during the lockdown. It had also onboarded kirana stores to help with the fulfilment of the orders.