Another exit at Flipkart; Sachin Bansal’s chief of staff Satyam Bansal joins Hotstar

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Satyam Bansal

Satyam Bansal

In the midst of a flurry of exits from Flipkart comes the news of departure of Satyam Bansal, who was chairman Sachin Bansal’s chief of staff. A former director of digital marketing and alliances at the company, Satyam has joined digital video streaming company Hotstar as senior vice president, partnerships and distribution.

Flipkart didn’t respond to an email sent by Techcircle on the development. Satyam, however, confirmed the move.

As chief of staff, Satyam worked closely with Sachin. He spent three years at the ecommerce company in various capacities in the marketing division. Prior to joining Flipkart, he had founded MIDDS, a digital design training and delivery service for retail stores.

Chief of staff is a crucial top-level function at Flipkart. Chairman, CEO, CFO and chief product officer (CPO) are learnt to have their chiefs of staff in the company.

In April, Niket Desai, who was chief of staff to Punit Soni, the then CPO at Flipkart, had quit along with Soni himself. The duo had worked with Google previously.

Besides Desai and Soni, the company’s head of market place and member of board Mukesh Bansal; chief business officer Ankit Nagori and chief finance officer Sanjay Baweja, too, had quit during the course of the year.

Talent retention emerged as a key challenge for Flipkart while it battled a series of markdowns this year. Last month, one of its investors Morgan Stanley marked down the value of its investment in the company, thus, taking Flipkart’s valuation down to $5.57 billion, which was almost one-third of its peak valuation of $15.2 billion a year ago. Before Morgan Stanley, another investor Vanguard had slashed the value of its investment in the company after which Flipkart’s valuation had slid to $7.34 billion.