File image of Ritesh Agarwal | Samyukta Lakshmi | Bloomberg
Text Size:

Bangalore: Oyo Hotels founder Ritesh Agarwal took to Twitter to reject reports the lodging and vacation home rental startup has filed for bankruptcy after a supplier’s $22,000 claim.

The entrepreneur tweeted Wednesday his company had initially disputed an unidentified supplier’s claim for 16 lakh rupees or about $22,000, but eventually paid “under protest.” Agarwal, also Oyo’s chief executive officer, was responding to a document widely circulated on social media he said appeared to show his startup had sought bankruptcy protection, which he called “absolutely untrue.”

 

Oyo has declined to comment further on a legal matter, according to a statement he retweeted.

Oyo, one of the larger startups in SoftBank Group Corp.’s portfolio, was struggling to restructure and whittle down loss-making operations even before the pandemic obliterated travel. Its breakneck expansion, encouraged and financed by SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son, led to operational missteps and soured partnerships. The company ended up laying off or furloughing thousands of employees. It reached a valuation of $10 billion before global lockdowns in the wake of Covid-19.

In December, Agarwal was said to have told employees the Indian startup was making progress toward recovering from the coronavirus fallout and had about $1 billion to fund operations until an initial public offering. Agarwal tweeted on Wednesday that the startup’s business was recovering steadily and its largest markets were profitable. — Bloomberg


Also read: Oyo is in trouble in Japan but parent SoftBank has a plan to fix it


 

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it

India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.

But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.

ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.

Support Our Journalism

VIEW COMMENTS