EXCLUSIVE: The nearly $3 billion Udaan lays off thousands of its contract staff⁠— sales and delivery guys are now out of jobs

File photo of Udaan co-founder Sujeet Kumar
  • The Indian B2B e-commerce unicorn startup has sacked half of its ground force, a source told Business Insider.
  • Those laid off consist of the sales force, the delivery guys and more. None of the on-roll employees have been asked to leave.
  • In October 2019, Udaan had raised a whopping $585 million from Tencent, Altimeter, Footpath Ventures, Hillhouse, GGV Capital and Citi Ventures.
Indian unicorn startup Udaan has sacked half of its ground force, a source told Business Insider. The startup has laid off its contract staff including the sales force, delivery guys and more. The B2B e-commerce platform claims to have the "largest national distribution platform of its kind enabling retailers and businesses to source merchandise from manufacturers, brands, white labels, importers".

Udaan admitted that it is rightsizing staff given the woes in the retail industry from the coronavirus pandemic. "Driven by economies of doing business in a sustainable manner, we are rightsizing and rationalizing some of our teams on ground in this unprecedented situation of coronavirus," said a statement from Udaan.

“On Friday morning, Udaan sent out individual emails to these guys asking them to leave the company,” a source told Business Insider. However, none of the on roll employees have been asked to leave.

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Late Friday (April 24) evening, a Twitter account was also created called Udaan Employees. “The Top E-commerce B2B UDAAN company from Bangalore, removed 200+ employees without any notice in midnight stating cost cutting without worrying about their employees nor any government rules,” said a tweet from the account.


In October 2019, Udaan had raised a whopping $585 million from Tencent, Altimeter, Footpath Ventures, Hillhouse, GGV Capital and Citi Ventures. The startup’s existing investors Lightspeed Venture Partners and DST Global too participated in the series D round. Reports said that this was the biggest single funding round raised by a B2B platform in India.

With the funding in October 2019, Udaan’s valuation had soared to $2.8 billion with a total funding of $870 million. In September 2018, udaan became one of the fastest Indian startups to reach unicorn status with a valuation of $1 billion.
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