Ashneer Grover, family embezzled business money to fund lavish lifestyle: BharatPe
Fintech unicorn BharatPe has heavily criticized its ex-co-founder and chief executive Ashneer Grover saying that Grover and his family have engaged in extensive embezzlement of company funds to support their lavish lifestyle. The company said that in order to uphold its highest governance standards and in light of complaints received, BharatPe’s board of directors led a thorough review of the company’s internal controls. This thorough review is conducted by respected and independent external advisers, he added.
The company said it reserves all rights to take further legal action against him and his family.
Without saying whether BharatPe accepted Grover’s resignation, the company said he was no longer an employee, founder or director of the company.
“The Board will not allow the deplorable conduct of the Grover family to tarnish the reputation of BharatPe or that of its hard-working employees and world-class technology. As a result of his misdeeds, Mr Grover is no longer an employee, founder or director of the company,” BharatPe told BT in response to an email query.
“BharatPe is fully committed to its employees and customers and looks forward to its continued success as India’s fintech leader,” the company’s spokesperson said.
Grover tendered his resignation in the early hours of March 1 to the BharatPe board, calling the corporate governance review a deception in which he had no opportunity to be heard and accused the company’s investors, like Sequoia Capital, of stoking the fire. against him.
Grover declined to comment when contacted by BT for further responses to BharatPe’s comments.
“Within minutes of Mr. Ashneer Grover being advised that some of the results of the investigation would be presented to the Board, he quickly shirks his responsibility by emailing the Board tendering his resignation and fabricating another false account of events to the public. The company has strongly objected to Mr. Grover telling lies and making baseless allegations and threats. The Grover family and their relatives engaged in numerous embezzlements of company funds, including, but not limited to, creating fake vendors through which they embezzled money from the company’s expense account. business and grossly abused corporate expense accounts in order to enrich themselves and fund their lavish lifestyles,” BharatPe said.
The company conducted a governance review and engaged risk consultancy Alvarez and Marsal, consultancy PwC and law firm Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas and Co, to investigate the alleged embezzlement and corporate governance issues under Grover.
Earlier, Grover had sent a letter to the board of Bharat Pe in which he wrote: “I write this with a heavy heart because today I am forced to say goodbye to a company of which I am one of the founders. I say with my head held high that today this company is a leader in the world of fintech. Since the beginning of 2022, unfortunately, I have been involved in baseless and targeted attacks against me and my family by a few individuals who are out to not only harm me and my reputation but also harm the reputation of the company they are ostensibly trying to protect.”
BharatPe, in response, said his board is taking all necessary steps to strengthen the corporate governance of the company, including appointing an audit committee, an internal auditor and implementing other key internal controls.
“BharatPe’s success is the result of the collective effort of a large team of dedicated and talented professionals, not just one individual. We are confident that the company is marking the start of a new chapter in its success. , a chapter built on trust and integrity, and we are excited to embark on this next leg of our journey,” said BharatPe.