Ride-hailing service Ola named Vishal Kaul, a PepsiCo expert, as its chief operating officer (COO) and raised current COO Pranay Jivrajika as founding partner.
Kaul, who hinged PepsiCo in 1999, has been vice-president (marketing), vice-president (business operations) and most newly, general manager (Thailand, Myanmar and Laos).
An HRD, Symbiosis Centre for Management and alumnus of Punjab Engineering College, Kaul will “head Ola’s operations, strengthen Ola’s market leadership, enlarge its reach to the nooks and corners of the country and widen the immoral of Ola’s customers and driver-partner fraternity,” ANI Technologies, which runs Ola, claimed.
“I am thrilled about Vishal connecting Ola to lead our operation. Vishal’s energy is palpable and I have really relished my interactions with him since we began interacting a few months ago. He is a passionate and skilled business leader with a demonstrated ability to energy business towards growth and profitability. His instinctive understanding of consumer businesses, ecosystem management experience and market understanding are priceless,” founder and chief executive Bhavish Aggarwal added.
Jivrajika, also the company’s first employee, will work carefully with Aggarwal to lead strategic initiatives. An alumnus of Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, Jivrajika had former served as associate vice-president and later vice-president of operations already taking over as COO in 2015 February.
“Pranay has been a partner with Ankit and me in each single brick that has been laid since inception, from one booking a day to done a million bookings a day now. Over the past six to eight months, Pranay has been operating with me closely on many key strategic wits and I congratulate him on his fresh role as a founding partner. This organizational variation will enable him to emphasis on these initiatives much more sharply,” said Aggarwal.
The company has, however, writhed with senior-level exits. Some of the senior executives who have quit contain Sundeep Sahni, a former executive at e-commerce firm Lazada Indonesia who was employed as vice-president of new initiatives, and Abhimanyu Rawal, head of Ola’s luxury car business. Both Sahni and Rawal left in December last year.
Earlier, Harsha Kumar, associate vice-president of products, and Rushil Goel, head of the payments business had leave.