The Impact of Reliance’s Restructuring: Milkbasket Layoffs

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In a significant development, Milkbasket, a subscription commerce firm, is reportedly planning to downsize its workforce drastically, resulting in a substantial number of layoffs. This move comes following the departure of its top three executives and the integration of Milkbasket with Reliance Retail, which acquired a significant stake in the company. While Reliance denies the layoffs, multiple sources familiar with the matter have confirmed this restructuring. This article delves into the details of the layoffs, the impact on employees, and the future prospects of Milkbasket.

Milkbasket’s Workforce Downsizing

According to reliable sources, Milkbasket is expected to lay off approximately two-thirds of its current headcount, which amounts to around 600 employees. This downsizing is likely to affect the entire offline marketing, sales, and head office teams. In addition to the layoffs, the company has asked many of its employees to resign and explore opportunities outside the organization within the next few weeks. While the exact reasons behind this decision remain undisclosed, it is speculated that the restructuring is a result of Reliance’s acquisition of Milkbasket and its plans to launch a new platform called ‘Jio Smart Daily.’

“Milkbasket has apparently asked many of its employees to resign and explore opportunities outside the company within the next few weeks.” – Entrackr

Impact on Employees and Reliance’s Accommodation Efforts

The downsizing and resignations at Milkbasket are expected to have a significant impact on the affected employees. While Reliance Retail, the acquiring company, is looking to accommodate some of Milkbasket’s teams across its group companies, there will still be a substantial number of staff members who may be left without employment. The integration of Milkbasket with Reliance’s JioMart platform may result in the gradual phasing out of the Milkbasket brand altogether. The remaining team members at Milkbasket are expected to become part of Jio Smart, with the operations team potentially merging with Reliance Stores and Bazaar.

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Management Changes and Acquisition by Reliance

Over the past few months, Milkbasket has witnessed significant changes in its top and mid-level management. Co-founder Yatish Talvadia, Chief Operating Officer Abhinav Imandi, and Chief Financial Officer Gaurav Srivastava have all left the company following its integration with JioMart. Reliance’s acquisition of a 96.49% stake in Milkbasket was disclosed in October 2021, with the deal estimated to be worth around $40-45 million. Prior to the acquisition, Milkbasket had raised approximately $33 million from investors such as Mayfield, Unilever, Beenext, and Blume Ventures.

Reliance Denies Layoffs and Rebranding

After the initial report of the layoffs and rebranding at Milkbasket, a Reliance spokesperson reached out to Entrackr and denied these claims. According to the spokesperson, Milkbasket as a brand continues to grow and serve its customers. While there might be some realignment or reallocation of roles within the group as part of the integration with JioMart, there are no plans to lay off any employees. However, multiple sources have confirmed the downsizing and resignations, indicating a discrepancy between Reliance’s official statement and the ground reality.

The Future of Milkbasket and Reliance’s Plans

With Reliance denying the layoffs and rebranding, the future of Milkbasket remains uncertain. The integration with JioMart and the launch of ‘Jio Smart Daily’ may bring about significant changes in the company’s operations and branding. Reliance’s extensive reach and resources could potentially strengthen Milkbasket’s position in the market or lead to a complete transformation of the brand. As Reliance continues to expand its presence in the Indian market, it remains to be seen how Milkbasket fits into its overall business strategy.

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Conclusion

The downsizing and layoffs at Milkbasket following its integration with Reliance Retail have raised concerns about the future of the company and the well-being of its employees. While Reliance denies the layoffs, multiple sources have confirmed the restructuring efforts. The impact on the affected employees and the potential phasing out of the Milkbasket brand remain significant points of discussion. As the integration with JioMart progresses and the ‘Jio Smart Daily’ platform is launched, the fate of Milkbasket will become clearer. In the meantime, employees and industry observers are closely watching the developments and hoping for the best outcomes during this period of transition.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is based on publicly available sources and does not constitute financial or investment advice. The author does not have any affiliation with the companies mentioned in the article.

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