New Delhi: The dramatic midnight resignation of Ashneer Grover ahead of the crucial BharatPe board meeting on Tuesday came as an independent PwC ‘governance review’ found him guilty of financial irregularities worth several crores along with his wife Madhuri Jain Grover, according to sources.
Sources close to the development told IANS on Tuesday that the Board was set to grill Ashneer over the PWC report regarding his conduct and take action based on it, which was to ultimately sack him.
The sources confirmed that the PwC ‘governance review’ had found financial wrongdoings at Ashneer’s ends too.
Sensing what was coming his way, Ashneer decided to shoot off an emotionally-charged and lengthy resignation to the Board on Monday midnight, in a bid to salvage his image before the damage was done.
A BharatPe spokesperson told IANS that Ashneer resigned as Managing Director and Board Director of BharatPe “minutes after receiving the agenda for upcoming Board meeting that included submission of the PWC report regarding his conduct and considering actions based on it”.
“The Board reserves the right to take action based on the report’s findings,” the spokesperson added.
The resignation came as top investors in the fintech platform declined to buy his 8.5 per cent stake in the company for Rs 4,000 crore as he had sought. Ashneer also lost an arbitration in Singapore he filed against the fintech platform for launching a probe against him.
According to sources, Grover’s valuation does not hold ground as the company is not valued at $6 billion as being projected by him.
At a $2.85 billion valuation and at the current dollar-rupee exchange rate, his stake would be around Rs 1,824 crore.
In the letter, Ashneer said that the Board and its probe will not find a single act of impropriety against him.
He also took a dig at the founder-investor relationship in India, calling it one of “slavery”.
“You treat us founders as slaves – pushing us to build multi-billion-dollar businesses and cutting us down at will. The investor-founder relation in India is one of master-slave. I am the rebel slave who must be hung by the tree so none of the other slaves can dare to be like me ever again,” he wrote.