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40 SKS Microfin staff set to join Akula's venture

Sanjay Jog  |  Mumbai 

Barely 12 days after SKS Microfinance founder and chairman Vikram Akula resigned from the company board in the wake of mounting losses, about 40 senior staff members put in their papers last week. These members, owing allegiance to Akula, are expected to join his new venture.

The company is yet to accept the resignations of these employees, who have eight to 15 years of experience. The resignations of these staff members come just before the company is set to announce its new business plans on Wednesday.

Akula plans to start a mobile banking venture soon and would remain involved with the microfinance industry “at a policy level”. Akula has signed a non-compete agreement with SKS, which prevents him from starting a microfinance business.

A company spokesperson told Business Standard, “SKS has been seeing a steady decline in attrition levels in the last six months. There has been no significant change in SKS' attrition rate since October, when we had disbursed annual retention bonuses. SKS has not lost any senior leadership talent in the last two quarters. Going forward, the company does not expect any material impact on operations due to the resignations in question or from attrition.” He, however, refused to admit or deny the resignations of the 40 staff members.

B Ashoka Chakravarthy, who resigned as assistant regional manager, after working for over eight and half years at the company, said, “I have resigned from the company in search of better prospects. After the exit of Vikram Akula, I had no interest to continue in the company. Still, I want to mention SKS Microfinance is a great company.”

When contacted, Akula said, “I am legally advised to not discuss, comment on, or respond to your queries. Consequently, I regret my inability to respond to your questions, beyond saying I am unable to comment.”

First Published: Tue, December 06 2011. 00:37 IST