I have spent the last few months engaging with our leaders and ensuring that we are focused on making OYO a technologically enabled hospitality leader. I believe that 2021 is going to be the year of the ‘Resurgent OYO’, where our organization will rise again while:
- Driving CARE for our stakeholders
- Being fiscally deeper
- Being guided by technology and data-led decision making, at the heart of which will lie a consumer-centric mindset
Of late, I have been thinking of how I can harness our fantastic group of leaders, who continue to steer OYO to realise this aspiration. In the past few weeks, I had sessions with our senior global leaders to identify our areas of improvement and get their suggestions.
During our interactions, I learned about the benefits and opportunities to build a clear road map where leaders in central organisations and CEOs will support our business aspiration in the times to come. Hence, today I am writing to share some announcements on the leadership and responsibilities to improve our capability building organisation by staying focussed on large, strategic, cross-functional and knowledge-building initiatives while ensuring significant ownership with geo-leadership and partner with them effectively to deliver on the AOP for the coming year. All of this is critical to building the ‘Resurgent OYO’, as I mentioned above.
Before I come to the details, it’s important for you to understand what we are solving for. Basis my discussions, while we have brought about several benefits like consistent data metrics, clear goals, product-based resolutions, cross-market knowledge sharing, we still need to make significant improvements, such as:
- Improve direct team connects at all levels, especially at the Director, AVP and VP levels, with a focus on building synergies between them (within geographies and between market and global teams)
- Align priorities of the geography and global leadership, and find technology and product-led solutions to common challenges
- Make global/central cost allocation mechanism more transparent and efficient
- Set clear targets/budgets and guardrails for all geographies and capability teams; bring all the functions together to focus on growing cash CM and improving partner and customer experience
- Strike the right balance between direction and decisions taken by regional teams and global capability teams on different fronts in geographies
As we look at the new organization to enable these solutions, I believe the following principles should be kept in mind:
- Single ownership of all global capability functions to improve alignment and efficiency in execution
- Deep dive execution on organizational matters of each geography and corporate
- Deeper cost understanding to ensure improvement of GSS cost allocation to regions
- Product / Engineering partnership to ensure that we get balanced outcome on results
- All of these must lead to a great partnership to enable key success metrics for the organization right from AOP operating metrics to financial metrics
In this light, meet our leaders in their new roles.
ABHINAV SINHA — GLOBAL CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Based on the above principles and as I understand Abhinav’s strengths in all the above, I am pleased to announce that Abhinav Sinha is taking over the responsibility of leading Commercial (new organisation), Supply and Operations organisations as our Global Chief Operating Officer. This is in line with the discussion that I have had with a lot of you. All capability teams, including Supply, Partner Experience, Revenue Management, Growth and Customer Experience teams will report to Abhinav. He will be responsible for building Revenue, Operations and Supply by transforming these functions through a product and technology-first approach. He will work closely with all regional and market CEOs to enable delivery on the financial and operating metrics by creating central, standardised and sustainable solutions for complex problems across these three verticals. Abhinav will be supported directly by Ayush Mathur for Supply and Shreerang Godbole for Customer Experience. Anuj Tejpal will also work closely with him and support him on all revenue-related matters.
Abhinav will continue to guide the US business and will be on the board of our LATAM JV.
MANINDER GULATI — GLOBAL CHIEF STRATEGY OFFICER & BOARD MEMBER OF OYO VACATION HOMES EUROPE
Throughout the crisis, we have been taking steps to position OYO as a more efficient and resilient force — optimizing core capabilities of our business model, nurturing agility and talent of OYOprenuers, and equipping and reminding all stakeholders of the vision, aspiration and the promise we stand for. Maninder Gulati, our Global Chief Strategy Officer, has played a critical role in guiding us through this period, and in the past, he has helped us in setting up SMART, launching OYO Vacation Homes, growing OYO China, and increasing Cash CM for India. Going forward, he will take up the responsibility of laying out our long-term strategy focused on long-standing outcomes for the company. In addition to above, Maninder will also support Raj Kamal and Rishabh Gupta in our aspiration to achieve the AOP for OVH and EU Hotels.
This will be in addition to Maninder’s Board member responsibility for OYO China.
ANKIT TANDON — GLOBAL CHIEF BUSINESS OFFICER & INVITEE TO THE COMPENSATION COMMITTEE
Over the years, Ankit has successfully built multiple new capabilities and businesses for OYO, such as Operations, Repairs and Maintenance, Transformation, Procurement & Supply Chain, Operated Hotels business etc. He has also delivered several large cross-geography and cross-functional projects at a brisk pace and with significant financial impact (e.g. payables, G&A reduction and restructuring exercises earlier this year). Going forward, I am pleased to announce Ankit as the Global Chief Business Officer. He will lead the setup of the Global Business Services and the Business Performance Management teams (more on them below). This will be in addition to his Global Project Management Office (GPMO) responsibilities and I am confident that Ankit will do justice to his enhanced role.
- Business Performance Management (BPM) team: The BPM team will run a cadence of performance reviews, stage-gate discussions and problem-solving discussions for AOP delivery (both financial & operational AOPs). It will work closely with market CEOs and their teams to help them learn about global best practices and external and internal benchmarks. Additionally, the team will help the Group CFO and the FP&A team with documentation, reports and updates to our company’s Board and investors.
- Global Business Services (GBS): Historically our finance, legal and HR teams have been very strong subject matter experts – we have been able to scale up the functions and hire talent at a rapid pace across geographies and managed to quickly be on top of all local nuances in various countries. While we have done a great job in scaling up these teams to support business growth, we still have a lot of potential to further integrate technology into our processes and deliver efficiency. This presents an opportunity for us to make our organisation structure and processes more efficient via a tech-first thinking. This is in line with the suggestions that I have heard from you. Therefore, I propose to build the following two capabilities in these functions (Finance, HR and Legal) supported by two different org/teams, which will closely work with each other but with clear individual responsibilities and OKRs:
- Knowledge team (a core team of subject matter experts), which will bring in the knowledge expertise and focus on design thinking from the perspective of a next 2-3 year perspective. They will lead the problem solving on key functional matters, and most importantly, partner with market CEOs to deliver market-wise profitability & growth.
- Global Business Services team, which will be an end-to-end delivery arm to enable subject matter experts in translating ideas into execution while ensuring a tech-first thought process. This team will work with our Technology team to define and develop products and redesign processes to make the delivery of day-to-day transactions efficient. In sum, this team will be responsible to deliver seamless experience on all transactional matters to the market CEOs and capability CXOs. The Procurement and Supply Chain teams will also move under GBS and support all businesses and functions globally.
Please join me in congratulating Abhinav, Maninder and Ankit for their new roles. I wish them all the best, as we move forward on our recovery from COVID and build a healthier and more focused OYO, which will be one of the most profitable technology-led hotel companies!