Udaan, a B2B e-commerce platform, has announced an employee stock option plan (ESOP) policy covering all its employees with significant changes. Udaan said that it has decided to remove ‘cliff’ vesting for all ESOPs.

All future ESOP allocations at Udaan will vest every quarter. The one year ‘cliff’ period is a widely prevalent industry practice that requires employees to wait for one year for their ESOPs to start vesting. udaan has done away with this waiting period.

Meenakshi Priyam, Group Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO), Udaan, said, “People trust companies with their careers. We felt that the practice of granting ESOPs with a one-year cliff doesn’t reciprocate this trust. As a progressive employer, we have decided to take the lead in balancing the scales in employer-employee relationships in the industry and revamped our ESOP policy. We want to treat all our employees as responsible adults and as equal partners.”

As a part of the revamp, the company also announced that, every employee, regardless of their tenure or job profile, will be allotted ESOPs under their annual performance cycle. Further, these ESOPs will vest at a quarterly frequency and be completely vested within a two-year period – twice as fast as the industry norm of four years. Following these changes, the ESOP policy will now cover 100 per cent of its employees.

Strengthening the company’s culture

Commenting on the changes Udaan’s CHRO, said, “We made these changes to preserve and strengthen the culture of shared entrepreneurship at Udaan. Our annual ESOP programme creates a pathway for each and every employee to earn ownership in the company through their contributions & commitment. We have seen ownership and leadership being displayed by our people in every part and at every level of the organisation. We wanted to create enabling structures to nurture this and to reciprocate our people’s commitment to our mission of creating a world-class institution that will last beyond our lifetimes.”

Earlier this year, Udaan raised a total of $250 million through convertible notes and debt funding to further grow and capitalise on the enormous growth opportunity that the Indian e-commerce market offers.

The company said it has invested more than ₹4,000 crore in the past 12-18 months across different pillars of business – people, technology, supply chain, category, credit, compliance – to accelerate and strengthen capabilities to serve its customers better. The company has also undertaken various initiatives to enhance overall customer experience.

Growing numbers

Over the last five years, Udaan claims it has built the e-commerce ecosystem with a network of over 3 million registered users and 25-30,000 sellers across 1,000+ cities in the country covering more than 12,000 pin codes.

The platform says it has over 3 million kirana shops, retailers, chemists, farmers and others, doing over 5 million transactions per month.

The company operates a logistics network with over 200 warehouses spread over 10 million sq ft space across the country delivering over 8,000 tons of products every day. To cater to the growing demand, Udaan plans to scale its warehouse capacity to 50 million sq ft across the country in the next 7-8 years. 

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