Zomato Blacklisted By 6 IITs for Campus Placements; Students Warned Against Contacting Them
7 year old Zomato, which is the poster-child of food tech based startups in India, having expanded to 22 countries and generating 1.9 million views page traffic in a month; having a valuation of more than $1 billion have been blacklisted by IITs from campus placements.
Atleast 6 IITs – Delhi, Bombay, Kharagpur, Madras, Guwahati and Kanpur have confirmed this development.
Atal Ashutosh Agarwal, Vice-President, Technology Students’ Gymkhana at IIT-Kharagpur, said, “Any company which violates the procedural guidelines laid down by the AIPC may be blacklisted,”
Meanwhile, another placement official at one of the IITs have said, “No company should take the IIT system for granted,”
Back in July, Deepinder Goyal, founder of Zomato had lashed out against IIT Delhi, the place from where he had graduated. The issue was that Zomato was not provided day 1 slot for campus interviews, as the salary + ESOPs offered by them amounted to just Rs 26 lakh, a figure way too less for IIT Delhi’s standards.
He had said, “Campus placements in India are broken. Placement cells optimize only for money. Growth, esops, quality of work is secondary.”
Mohak Mehta, former placement manager at IIT Bombay says, “There are startups which get very egoistical about getting an early slot.”
At that time, IIT Delhi had responded by saying, “Any company which has to compete for a slot has to match the cash salary offer. Zomato did not match the salary offer,”
The issue didn’t end, it seems. Placement heads from 6 different IITs have now ganged up, and entirely stopped Zomato from entering their premises for any placement related activity.
As per Times of India, the main reason for Zomato’s blacklisting may be the recent layoffs, wherein their management had fired 10% of their employees in one single go. IITs do tend to give a warning in case of such unprecedented actions by recruiting companies; and blacklisted in case of severe actions.
Students Warned Against Contacting Them
An unverified circular from IIT Delhi is making rounds in the social media, which explicitly warns students from contacting Zomato in any form. As per the circular, Directi, a domain and web hosting company along with Zomato are blacklisted from campus placements, and if any student is found aiding them or contacting them, on or off campus, then strict disciplinary action would initiated against them.
This is most probably for the first time in history that IIT students are being warned from contacting a billion dollar startup!
We are still trying to verify the authenticity of this circular.
Meanwhile, blacklisting of Directi, which was implemented last year, may be revoked for 2015-16 placement season. They were blacklisted over placement interviews at IIT Kanpur last year. Placement heads at one of the IITs said, “Since IIT-Kanpur was the most aggrieved party, the decision to revoke the ban has now been left to them,”
Recently Deepinder Goyal came into news for sending out a hard hitting email to their sales team, detailing how they are missing the targets and more firing may become a necessity. The stern tone of this email surprised one and all.
We had earlier covered how Deepinder Goyal performed poorly at Reddit India AMA; and we had shared his 16 weird answers.
Is this recent blacklisting an issue of ego clash or a personal vendetta against Zomato? We will keep you updated as more details come in.