BK Birla

BK Birla, the co-founder and CEO of the online grocery store ZopNow, has been asked to step down from the company by ZopNow investors, Birla announced on his personal blog [hat tip – Hitesh Gupta @hiteshkgupta]. When we contacted Birla on this, he told he will call us back shortly. We haven’t heard from him since.

While the reasons for his ouster is not clear yet, Birla has hinted this ouster was planned by a friend and possibly a ZopNow employee, he has named as “Bhukri/Bhukesh”. Birla also claims that he had extended an offer to this employee to manage the company in the way he wants about three months ago, but the employee had declined this offer.

As for future plans, Birla says that he is considering to actively take up suicide prevention work in IITs, something which he had started recently. He also considering part-time consultancy projects with companies and pursuing RJing (Radio Jockey) more seriously.

Birla had started ZopNow along with Mukesh Singh in August 2011. Prior to this, he was AskLaila’s CTO for about five years and was Potluck’s CFO for five years. He’s also had stints at Amazon, Arcot and Infosys. He also currently hosts a radio show on the Internet radio service Radiowalla.in.

Bangalore-based ZopNow is an online grocery store which offers daily household products like flour, dairy products, organic products, frozen foods, beverages, personal care products and laundry products among others. The service is currently available in South and East Bangalore and claims to delivery products in three hours in these regions.

ZopNow had raised an undisclosed amount in Series A funding from Times Internet, Accel Partners and Qualcomm Ventures in July last year. Other players in this space include BigBasket, AaramShop and MyGrahak.com among others. HomeShop18 had also introduced a food and groceries category in June 2013.

Questions posed by Birla to Bhukri/Bhukesh

Q1. You have no single written communication to me which highlights the issues. All I have is a lack of response to atleast 25 company related issues despite 373 reminders written in softest of language. Is it possible for you to give me reasons in a written form? Your vocals have been saying different things at different time.

Q2. A friendly offer was extended to you approx 3 months back to run the company in the way you want which you not take up. Was it so important for you to make sure there is humiliation for me dear friend?

Q3. There is something called balls dear friend. Not sure you will understand it though. Did you not have enough balls to directly tell me instead of routing it via investors in such a funny way. The only good thing about people without balls is that they are less likely to reproduce and create their own kind. I started business with a dear friend not investors.

Q4. And last but not the least. Why did you treat me like a criminal dear friend. Agree that you decided to let me go and convinced rest of the “Bored” on that but that does not mean that you start changing social media accounts, bank accounts and other company things. Do I have a history of stealing money from anywhere. Trust me mate this hurts beyond repair. If somebody had done this to you, it might be worthwhile for you to imagine how this would have felt.

Q5. And thanks for perfect timing on my 40th birthday. Great feeling of a life reset as I enter forties.