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Industry moves: Haptik and Snapdeal

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Haptik has taken on its board of directors Professor Dan Roth. Roth will work with Haptik’s co-founder Swapan Rajdev to scale Haptik’s Natural language processing (NLP), the backend chat technology and understanding user behaviour to enhance its product and service. Roth will own a small equity stake and will become an equity partner at Haptik. Haptik mentions that it will be the first Indian company Roth has ever worked with.

Roth works as a professor in the department of Computer Science and The Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His research focuses on ‘computational foundations of intelligent behaviour’. He also works in the area of machine learning and inference methods to facilitate NLP where he has over 20 years of experience.

Haptik secured $1 million investment from Kalaari Capital in September last year.  It had said that the funds would be utilized for developing new features, building Haptik’s chat operations centre and marketing.

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gauravXguptaSnapdeal has appointed Gaurav Gupta as VP of engineering, reports ET. The company, the report adds, is planning to double its technology team from 1,000 to 2,000 members by the end of this year. Gupta will head Snapdeal’s cloud platform and tech infrastructure. Interestingly, Gupta’s LinkedIn profile states that he joined Snapdeal last month. Before joining Snapdeal, Gupta was the VP of engineering at ScaleArc for 3 years and the founding engineer at CloudVelox for about 2 years. Before that, he worked with Symantec as principal software engineer and at Cisco as senior software engineer. He also worked at Neopath Networks as senior software engineer before he joined Cisco.

Last month, Snapdeal appointed Jayant Sood as its chief customer experience officer. Sood would be responsible for customer service operations at the company. In the same month, the firm hired Idi Srinivas Murthy as its senior VP of marketing. It appointed Vivek Patankar as senior VP of Finance. In the same timeframe, Snapdeal’s chief financial officer Aakash Moondhra quit the company. Snapdeal also appointed Dharmarajan K as the head of customer experience. In February, Snapdeal CTO and Senior VP of Engineering Amitabh Misra resigned after about 3-and-a-half years with the e-commerce marketplace.In the same week, the company also hired Yahoo India R&D Division and Amazon India executive Jeyandran Venugopal. Venugopal is expected to initially serve an advisory role with Snapdeal’s technology leadership team.

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Corrigendum: This article previously carried incorrect information on Haptik’s funding. This version represents the correct funding information. 

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