Jul 24, 2017

Mu Sigma’s people troubles continue; head of sales Shelly Singh quits

BYJayadevan PK

The head of sales at data analytics company Mu Sigma has quit, as the company continues to struggle with top-level movements. The exit puts question marks over the future growth of the $200 million company.
Shailendra (Shelly) Singh, who was based in Chicago, used to head the sales for the company selling its services to Fortune 500 companies such as MasterCard and Abbott.
Mu Sigma’s founder and CEO Dhiraj Rajaram said in a company wide e-mail this morning: “I want to share an important news with you. Shelly will be moving out. Shelly has been with us for 7 years now and needs no special introduction. He has decided to take a break and spend some time with his family before his next gig.”
FactorDaily has learned that Singh, who was based in Chicago, has already taken up a new job though it was not immediately clear which organisation he’d signed up with.
“The leadership team and I are putting together a plan to reorganise and I’ll talk about it soon,” Rajaram added in the e-mail.
Singh used to head sales and commercial effectiveness at the data analytics firm and was a key member of the company’s top leadership. “Shelly was like Dhiraj’s right hand man and was the interim CEO during the recent transition at the company,” said one source.

Global head of Sales, client services and Commercial effectivenness at Mu Sigma Inc.

Speculation is rife within the company that Rajaram will move to the United States to fill Shelly’s position in the short term. According to the source cited above, Rajaram had even offered a board seat to Singh which was declined.
Singh’s exit is the latest in a string of top-level changes at the company.
Rajaram and his co-founder wife, Ambiga Subramanian had a bitter fallout last year. That had triggered several top exits in the company. Subramanianhad taken on the CEO mantle last February, replacing Rajaram. He returned to the post in October 2016 but by then revenue growth had also started slowing. FactorDaily had reported the story in detail last year.
Company veteran Goutham Ekollu, the head of operations, quit in March 2016. Sayandeb Banerjee, Mu Sigma’s first employee, quit mid-August last year. Anuj Krishna, Aditya Kumbakonam, Manu Sharma, Adarsh Kumar and Sankar Sekar were some of the others who quit the firm. Ganesh Lakshminarayanan, who was the Managing Director of Mu Sigma Inc had quit earlier in 2015.
Rajaram, who said he’d relocated to the US when Subramanian became CEO, returned to Bengaluru to stabilise operations.
Reports in July this year said that Rajaram had bought back a 24% stake owned by Subramanian and employee stock options to become the largest shareholder of the company with a $400 million loan from a consortium of banks led by Barclays. He now owns 52% of the company.
The 13-year old company counts Sequoia Capital, Fidelity Capital and MasterCard as its investors.
Mu Sigma is a private company and does not disclose its revenues. However, according to industry sources, it is likely to have clocked revenues under $200 million in 2016.
The data analytics industry, in which over 600 Indian companies compete, is expected to grow to $16 billion in revenues by 2025 from about $2 billion currently, according to predictions by industry body Nasscom.
Emails have been sent to Rajaram and Singh seeking comment. FactorDaily will update this story when we hear from them.

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Jayadevan PK is a writer of FactorDaily.