Urban Ladder’s co-founder Rajiv Srivatsa resigns; Vani Kola quits board

After eight years of association with the start-up, Urban Ladder’s co-founder Rajiv Srivatsa has resigned from his role as the Chief Technology and Product Officer for the company. He had co-founded Urban Ladder with his B-school batchmate Ashish Goel.

While Rajiv would move out from his day to day role, in his statement on Linkedin he said that he “will continue to be an engaged shareholder and Board member, and work with Ashish on strategic initiatives. “

The company has been having funding issues, and has been struggling to turn profitable for quite some time. They have been reducing headcount to sustain their operations and to stay afloat.  It is understood that the company had laid off hundreds of employees, and trimmed its manpower by around 40 % in the quarter ended March 2019. 

Vani Kola, Managing Director of early-stage venture capital firm Kalaari Capital has also resigned from the company’s board. Kalaari Capital has been one of the key investors, and had led the funding round in 2018, when Kalaari Capital, Sequoia, Steadview Capital and SAIF Partners supported Urban Ladder raise $ 11.87 million. These investors had, earlier in 2017, pumped in around $15.6 million in the company. Till date, the company has raised a total funding of around $110 million. 

The reason behind Srivastava’s exit and Vani Kola are unknown but it impacts the company’s reputation, and may be attributed to the company’s performance and struggle with profitability.

On his exit, Rajiv Srivatsa posted this statement on his LinkedIn.

‘To new beginnings’-

The last 8 years have been an outstanding journey building Urban Ladder (UL). I will transition out of my active leadership role as CTPO at UL at the end of this month. I will continue to be an engaged shareholder and Board member, and work with Ashish on strategic initiatives. 

I am mighty proud of what we have accomplished at UL – a big shoutout and thanks to our customers, investors, partners, team members, friends, family and last but not least, Ashish for the ride of a lifetime! 

In our 8 year journey, we have built an incredibly well-loved and respected furniture brand. UL is recognized for its good quality, great design and outstanding service. I am supremely confident that we will continue this momentum and truly build one of India’s most loved consumer brands.

Periods of change are always exhilarating, and scary in their own way. The big question, what am I going to do next? I am starting with a reasonably blank slate. The plan is to explore various avenues in the coming months before choosing a specific path. I would love to connect with many of you, hear your experiences and maybe some dots will connect!  

‘The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step’. And I am taking my first step today in pursuit of a new journey. Wish me luck 🙂

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