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Snapdeal ropes in Anand Chandrasekaran from Bharti Airtel as chief product officer

 Anand Chandrasekaran

Anand Chandrasekaran

E-commerce marketplace Snapdeal, run by Delhi-based Jasper Infotech Pvt Ltd, has roped in former Bharti Airtel senior executive Anand Chandrasekaran as its chief product officer.

This is the latest in a series of top level appointments by Snapdeal in the past 12 months and the second from Bharti Airtel. Snapdeal had recently brought in Jayant Sood as chief customer experience officer from the telco. Sood was last working as head-contact experience at Bharti Airtel.

“Snapdeal is in a phase of hyper growth and I believe under Anand’s leadership we will set new benchmarks for intuitive and highly engaging products not just within India but globally as well,” Rohit Bansal, co-founder and chief operating officer, Snapdeal, said.

Chandrasekaran, who spearheaded the launch of several technology initiatives as Bharti Airtel’s chief product officer, recently quit after a 13-month stint with the company as its chief product officer.

He was responsible for driving Airtel’s carrier agnostic music streaming service Wynk, APIs and Airtel Money along with Airtel’s entire online business. Launched in September 2014, Wynk was the telco’s first cross-operator product which gave access to a huge catalogue of songs for customers of all operators.

During his stint, the carrier partnered with Google for Android One and went on to become the first offline partner for selling Xiaomi smartphones at its retail outlets.

However, more recently he is said to have taken a lot of personal heat on the net neutrality issue when the controversy erupted over Bharti Airtel seeking to create a walled garden for accessing a set of internet or mobile internet ventures under Airtel Zero.

Before Bharti Airtel, Chandrasekaran was senior director with internet giant Yahoo in California, US. Prior to Yahoo, he was director of product at Openwave. In 2001, Chandrasekaran had co-founded Aeroprise, said to be the world’s most widely deployed mobility solution for IT service management.

In an earlier interview with Techcircle.in, Chandrasekaran had hinted that he would look at entrepreneurial opportunities in the country’s burgeoning consumer internet space.

“I cannot think of something more entrepreneurial than this. Usually the choice is between doing something on your own and joining a big company. My appointment at Snapdeal a great example of both choices coming together,” Chandrasekaran told Techcircle.in.

Further, he said that Snapdeal’s entrepreneurial energy and the company’s culture attracted him the most.

“Snapdeal co-founders are role models for entrepreneurs. They have built a company with a fantastic culture. Two things strike out for me: the openness of the company and its ability to adapt to change,” Chandrasekaran said.

Chandrasekaran holds a MS in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University and a BS in Communications Engineering from PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore.

Snapdeal has been on a hiring spree. Recently, it appointed Gaurav Gupta as vice-president (VP), engineering. Prior to that, the company brought in Jeyandran Venugopal from Yahoo as technology advisor and Bhuvan Gupta as VP- engineering. In February, Snapdeal CTO Amitabh Misra had quit the company.

It also roped in Vivek Patankar as senior vice president – finance from Unilever to replace Aakash Moondhra.

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