Shares of online food delivery platform Zomato tumbled over 4% in opening trade on Tuesday after its co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Gunjan Patidar resigned from the post on Monday. The restaurant aggregator has seen a slew of top level exits in the last one year, including co-founder Gaurav Gupta, Siddharth Jhawar, the ex-vice-president and head of Intercity, and Rahul Ganjoo, head of new initiatives.  

“Gunjan Patidar, Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer at the Company has tendered his resignation today,” Zomato said in a post market hour release on Monday. The company, however, did not disclose reasons for his resignation.

“Gunjan Patidar was one of the first few employees of Zomato and built the core tech systems for the company. Over the last ten plus years, he also nurtured a stellar tech leadership team that is capable of taking on the mantle of leading the tech function going forward. His contribution to building Zomato has been invaluable,” the company said in the exchange filing.

As per the exchange filing, Gunjan Patidar was not designated as key managerial personnel so this disclosure was made voluntarily.

Reacting to the news, Zomato share price opened lower at ₹59, against the previous closing price of ₹60.25 on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). Extending losses, the stock declined as much as 4.3% to hit a low of ₹57.65. The market capitalisation of the food delivery unicorn stood at ₹50,626 crore at the time of reporting. In comparison, the BSE Sensex was trading marginally lower at 61,153 levels, tracking weak cues from global peers.

The stock currently trades 58% lower than its 52-week high of ₹142.4 touched on January 3, 2022. It touched its all-time low of ₹40.55 touched on July 27, 2022. In the last one year, the stock has fallen 58%, whereas it has risen 9% in the past six months. The counter has dropped 10% in a month, while it climbed nearly 2% in a week.

Zomato has had a mixed journey since its market debut in July 2021. The stock price of the food delivery firm touched a record high of ₹157.95 on November 30, 2021, against its initial public offering (IPO) price of ₹76. However, the stock lost momentum in the last one year and currently trades over 20% lower than its IPO price. The key factors that weighed on stock performance are weak earnings, the acquisition of e-grocery startup Blinkit (formerly Grofers), and volatile market conditions. The recent layoffs by Zomato also raised concerns about the financial health of the company.

For the July-September quarter (Q2 FY23), Zomato reported a sharp decline in its consolidated net loss to ₹250.8 crore against ₹434.9 crore in the same quarter last year. Its revenue from operations jumped 62.20% to ₹1,661.3 crore from ₹1,024.2 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. For the food delivery business, the gross order value (GOV) grew 23% year-on-year (YoY) on the back of growth in both order volumes and average order value.

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