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January 07, 2015

Unraveling Oravel's founder

The Mint has a detailed profile of the founder of Venture Capital-backed budget hotels aggregator Oravel (now, OyoRooms) titled "Will the real Ritesh Agarwal please stand up?".  The piece makes the company appear  Facebook like - at least as described in the move The Social Network - full of bad behaviour, co-founder strife, et al.

Extracts:
A co-founder booted out, employees not given their due and hung out to dry, pieces of paper with informal promises of a stake, a charismatic founder’s attempt to wipe the slate clean, exaggerated pitches, cold and calculated interference of venture capital firms, their sanctimonious contracts and clauses, and the world of make-believe valuations.
...“See, Ritesh is a gifted and talented person. I genuinely believed in his ability and story when he first signed me up as a co-founder,” he said. “But later there was this other side to his personality that surfaced. Many things that happened are unethical and I have lived with them not fully knowing or realizing what had gone on. Though I discovered it somewhat late I feel that the complete story—with his grey zones and his propensity for unfair play—needs to be told.” (Attributed to Manish Sinha, Co-founder)
...Ten minutes into the meeting Ritesh pushed a paper towards Sinha and asked him to sign it. He then excused himself and stepped out. Sinha picked up the paper, thinking it must be a bill or something. But as he read it, the colour drained from his face. “The document stated that I would sell all my shares to Ritesh,” says Sinha. “I was furious. I just flung the paper on the table and walked out.”
Well, well, well.
“See, Ritesh is a gifted and talented person. I genuinely believed in his ability and story when he first signed me up as a co-founder,” he said. “But later there was this other side to his personality that surfaced. Many things that happened are unethical and I have lived with them not fully knowing or realizing what had gone on. Though I discovered it somewhat late I feel that the complete story—with his grey zones and his propensity for unfair play—needs to be told.”

Read more at: http://www.livemint.com/Companies/7CN7u5d4i3bfYgBAZLdLpM/Will-the-real-Ritesh-Agarwal-please-stand-up.html?utm_source=copy
“See, Ritesh is a gifted and talented person. I genuinely believed in his ability and story when he first signed me up as a co-founder,” he said. “But later there was this other side to his personality that surfaced. Many things that happened are unethical and I have lived with them not fully knowing or realizing what had gone on. Though I discovered it somewhat late I feel that the complete story—with his grey zones and his propensity for unfair play—needs to be told.”

Read more at: http://www.livemint.com/Companies/7CN7u5d4i3bfYgBAZLdLpM/Will-the-real-Ritesh-Agarwal-please-stand-up.html?utm_source=copy

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