Vy Capital buys Urban Company’s $5 Mn worth ESOPs

Home service marketplace Urban Company has announced its third employee stock sale program worth $5 million or Rs 37.5 crore. About 180 existing employees ranging from customer care executives to SVPs participated in this program.

The ESOPs sale was undertaken at Rs 1,10,000 per share- the same price at which Series E secondary transaction had taken place in June 2019. 

Confirming the development to Entrackr, Urban Company said that under the program, the employees were given the option to liquidate their vested ESOPs. These offloaded shares have been purchased by the company’s existing investor Vy Capital through a secondary transaction. 

The UAE-based investment firm has been backing the company since its Series C funding round in 2017 and presently holds around 10.7% stake in the company. 

“This ESOP sale event re-affirms our commitment towards creating a world-class ESOP programme. At Urban Company, employees are awarded ESOPs at the time of recruitment, during an appraisal cycle, and as part of various internal R&R initiatives,” said Abhiraj Singh Bhal, co-founder of Urban Company in a statement. 

Floated by Bhal, Raghav Chandra and Varun Khaitan, the six-year-old Gurugram-based company recently forayed into its third overseas market – Australia – after UAE and Singapore. At present, it has over 25,000 professionals on its platform serving around 5 lakh customers in 22 cities.

The fresh ESOP sale for the Urban Company has come two years after it held its second ESOP sale in December 2018, valuing each ESOP at Rs 61,864. Prior to that, the first ESOP sale event was executed in June 2017 in which around 25 employees took part. To date, the company claims to have offered stock ownership to 670 employees, which include 450 current employees.

There has been a rise in the number of secondary deals in the Indian startup ecosystem in the past couple of years. Last month, Goldman Sachs had bought out stakes of several early-stage angel investors in the hybrid cosmetic product platform Purplle, while Paytm, Vedantu, Byju’s and Zerodha have also been in the news for ESOP buyback programs in 2020. 

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