Employees sit talking in the office of Myntra.com in Bengaluru, India (Photographer: Namas Bhojani/Bloomberg)

Walmart To Lay Off 40% Workforce At Jabong, Merge It With Myntra

Walmart is likely to lay off more than a third of the workforce at online fashion retailer Jabong and merge it with Myntra, according to two people aware of the development, as Binny Bansal’s ouster hastens restructuring at Flipkart Group.

Dipanjan Basu, chief financial officer of Myntra and Jabong, also stepped down, one of the people quoted earlier said requesting anonymity. Basu joined Myntra in 2016. Before that, he was vice-president-finance and operations at Wipro Digital.

The world’s largest retailer is looking to streamline costs and marketing expenses of Myntra and Jabong, the people said. Jabong has a workforce of 300-350 employees. Myntra chief Ananth Narayanan, in a letter written to the employees earlier today, said as they move closer towards integration, “friends and co-workers at Jabong will be impacted”.

Myntra and Jabong will now fully integrate all the remaining functions, including technology, marketing, category, revenue, finance and creative teams, a Myntra spokesperson said in a separate statement.

This comes after Binny Bansal, co-founder and group chief executive officer of Flipkart, resigned after an investigation into allegations of sexual assault. The country’s largest online retailer acquired Myntra for around $300 million in 2014. It acquired Jabong in 2016 to strengthen its position as a fashion and lifestyle retailer.

The Economic Times first reported on the layoffs at Jabong earlier today.

Until now, Myntra and Jabong—wholly owned units of Flipkart—operated independently. The two people quoted earlier said that for now the Jabong website will continue to run but eventually Walmart, which owns 77 percent in Flipkart, plans to have just one brand and the traffic will be directed to Myntra’s portal.

Also read: Binny Bansal’s Exit Is More Good News Than Bad For Walmart

Walmart on Tuesday, in its filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, said Myntra and Jabong will operate as businesses under Flipkart and Myntra chief Narayanan will report to Kalyan Krishnamurthy, chief executive officer of Flipkart.

Business Standard, however, on Thursday reported that Narayanan plans to step down following the change in reporting structure after Bansal’s exit. Myntra in its statement reiterated that Narayanan will continue to lead the retailer and will report to Krishnamurthy.

Narayanan is likely to address the Myntra and Jabong team later today, according to one of the people quoted above.

Also read: Flipkart Billionaire’s Exit Puts Corporate India on Notice