ElasticRun makes key appointments to its leadership team

PUNE, India, March 2, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — ElasticRun, India’s leading B2B eCommerce platform enabling access to millions of rural Indian kirana shops, announced the expansion of its leadership team with three key new hires. The new team-members include Pankaj Roongta who has joined as the CFO, Sashi Gumma joining as CBO – Networks , and Dheeraj Arora who has come on board as CBO – Supply. The Company recently closed Series E funding of US$330 million. ElasticRun’s focus now is on further expanding its rural reach into 30+ states, enabling over a million kirana (neighbourhood retail) shops to conveniently access big consumer brands and food brands.

Commenting on the new additions to the team, Sandeep Deshmukh, ElasticRun co-founder and CEO, said, “In the last few years, ElasticRun has grown thanks to a very high speed of execution. Hustle and agility is a core part of our DNA. For the next phase of growth, we are looking to build a formidable team led by seasoned business leaders who exemplify the innovation mindset along with robust scaling experience. We are a fast-growing ‘Network of Possibilities’ and these leaders will help us create distinctive capabilities and build a future-fit organization. We are delighted to welcome Pankaj, Sashi and Dheeraj to ElasticRun and look forward to unlocking the market opportunity and achieving milestones together.”

India has over 12 million kirana shops across the country of which 10 million are in rural markets. ElasticRun is democratising physical and digital access to Indian consumers by helping businesses reach traditionally unserved consumers through neighbourhood retail stores across the deepest rural pockets of India. These rural stores remain underserved by consumer brands due to the high-cost structures of traditional distribution networks, rural kirana store’s long distances from the cities and small order sizes.

Pankaj Roongta joins ElasticRun as the Chief Financial Officer from Westlife Development Ltd (McDonalds), where he held the position of Chief Financial Officer for the Indian listed entity. Pankaj comes with over 20 years of leadership experience in the full spectrum of Finance, P&L, Investor Relations, M&A, Corporate Governance, and Business Transformation along with functional leadership experience in Supply Chain/Logistics, Legal and Information Technology. He has previously worked with L’Oreal as Finance Director for Asia Pacific based out of Hong Kong, as well as Johnson & Johnson and Abbot India as Financial Controller.

Sashi Gumma who has joined ElasticRun as CBO – Networks, was previously the CEO-Supermarkets at More Retail, and responsible for building the brand’s national footprint, improving their margins and driving business growth. He is an alumni of IIT Kharagpur and IIM Ahmedabad, with over 22 years of experience in food and grocery-retail.

Dheeraj has joined as CBO, responsible for the supply side growth of the ElasticRun platform. Dheeraj is a Business leader credited with building businesses and business solutions from scratch. He has over two decades of experience in blue chip CPG companies like Unilever and Britannia. He held key roles in Unilever across India and international markets, where his last role was Vice President, Modern Trade & eCom at HUL.

About ElasticRun:

ElasticRun is the B2B eCommerce Platform, enabling businesses to reach small Kirana stores in the deep rural parts of India. The company acts as an extended arm of FMCG companies’ direct distribution networks in the rural area to provide a set of net new customers to the FMCG companies. ElasticRun also helps eCommerce companies reach customers in far-flung areas through its network of rural Kirana stores. It brings banks and financial institutions closer to a set of new underserved SME customers from its rural Kirana network. ElasticRun was founded by Sandeep Deshmukh, Shitiz Bansal and Saurabh Nigam in 2016. The company’s existing investors include Softbank, Prosus Ventures (formerly Naspers Ventures), Goldman Sachs, Kalaari Capital and Avataar Ventures.

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