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TaxiForSure CEO Arvind Singhal quits four months after Ola acquisition

Arvind Singhal

Arvind Singhal

Arvind Singhal, the chief executive of Ola-owned cab hailing service TaxiForSure, has quit the company citing personal reasons.

The move comes a little over two months after TaxiForSure’s co-founders Raghunandan G and Aprameya Radhakrishna moved on from the company, which was acquired by rival Ola in March.

In fact, Singhal was elevated to the top job at TFS after the acquisition.

The development was first reported by Mint newspaper. Ola, which is run by Mumbai-based ANI Technologies, did not respond to a Techcircle.in query till the time of writing this report.

Pallav Singh, senior vice president of operations at Ola, would be TFS’s new chief executive, the report said.

Prior to becoming CEO of TFS, Singhal was COO for about six months. Prior to TFS, he was Director-South at McDonald’s India, Singhal’s LinkedIn profile shows.

Ola, which is a home-grown competitor to San Francisco-based ride sharing app Uber, had acquired online taxi aggregator TaxiForSure for $200 million (Rs 1,250 crore) in March this year.

Founded in a 100-square foot office in Bangalore in 2011 by IIM-Ahmedabad alumni Raghunandan G and Aprameya Radhakrishna, TaxiForSure facilitated about five million cab rides for users over the last four years before being acquired by Ola. The duo still own 0.8 per cent stake in Ola which is currently worth just over $19 million (around Rs 120 crore), as per Techcircle.in estimates.

Under Ola, TaxiForSure has been operate as a separate entity. The two are similar at the front end for the consumer but have different back-end business models. While Ola has a driver-centric business where it brings individual driver owners of cabs to its network, TaxiForSure has an operator-centric model where it ties with cab operators with a fleet of cars in the network. Both firms also offer auto-rickshaw booking.

However, last month Ola has begun the process of integrating services of the recently acquired TaxiForSure on its mobile app. As a first step, customers can now book TaxiForSure hatchback cabs directly from the Ola app.

Ola has a network of over 70,000 cabs and more than 30,000 autos. In March, Ola had raised $400 million from Russian investor DST Global and others. Ola is now present in about 100 cities; it plans to cover 200 cities by the year-end.

Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of Tata Sons, recently made a personal investment in Ola while former Vodafone CEO Arun Sarin was inducted into the company’s board.

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