Even as Housing.com, the startup heralded as a tornado in India's fossilized real-estate sector, gets ready to lay off around 600 employees, its incorrigible former CEO, Rahul Yadav, appears to be on a high in Ladakh.
In Neroesque fashion, the former CEO publicly posted on Facebook that he'd "...just had LSD at the Pangong Tso Lake.." even as a fourth of the company's staff are set to be sacked, so that--as an unnamed executive told the Economic Times--the company could "tighten its cash burn." He also posted a picture of the lake.
While LSD generally refers to the psychedelic drug, Lysergic acid diethylamide--consumption and possession of which is illegal in India--we don't know if Yadav was admitting publicly to consuming the drug or in characteristic fashion trying to attract attention. He could easily explain away the post by coming up with an alternative expansion for LSD.
Rahul Yadav, variously described as erratic and brilliant, has frequently made fantastic claims on social media. Days after being fired by the management of Housing.com, he said he would, within '30 days' be back with a company that would be a hundred times more valuable than the last one.
His sacking preceded a string of high profile stunts on social media targetted at rivals, VCs and the media. While running Housing.com, he responded to reporters who enquired about a potential sale of his company by confirming to some and denying to others. He then emailed his colleagues asking them to watch the fun in the next day's papers.
Yadav's fun times came to an end and now after months of uncertainty about the well-funded company's future, it is becoming clear that many employees will pay the price for Yadav's stunts while on the saddle. As for him, he had previously posted on Facebook that he only had enough money to cover 45 days' expenses in his personal bank account.
Housing is currently managed by an executive committee led by Jonathan Bullock, who represents majority shareholder SoftBank on the board of Housing, Rishabh Gupta, interim CEO and chief operating officer, Housing's first angel investor Haresh Chawla and chief technical officer Abhishek Anand.
The three-year-old company has raised more than Rs 760 crore ($120 million) in funding and is valued at over Rs 1,500 crore. Founded in 2012 by a dozen college-mates from IIT-Mumbai, four of them, including Yadav, have now left the company.