Founder of digital mortgage lender firm Better, Vishal Garg will remain as CEO (chief executive officer) of the company, an internal memo has revealed. Garg gained a lot of attention in December 2021, when he infamously fired over 900 employees or 9 percent of his workforce over a Zoom video call. The employees affected by this decision are mainly from India and the US. According to CNBC, which assessed the internal memo, Garg would be returning to resume full-time duties as CEO. Following the firing incident last year, he had taken a break to “reflect on his leadership” and “reconnect with” Better’s values.
The memo further reveals that board members of Better, Raj Date and Dinesh Chopra have regained, but not “because of any disagreement with Better.” During Garg’s absence, Better CFO Kevin Ryan took over as interim CEO.
What happened in December 2021
During the mass Zoom firing incident in December, a video (now taken down) had also started doing rounds on the internet. Garg could be heard saying that it is the second time he’s doing this, and he cried during the first incident. He initially claimed that Better was firing 15 percent of the workforce, but a company spokesperson later clarified that it was 9 percent.
Garg could be heard saying, “This is the second time in my career I’m doing this, and I do not want to do this. The last time I did it, I cried. This time, I hope to be stronger. We are laying off about 15% of the company for a number of reasons — the market, efficiency and performances and productivity.”
After the video went viral, many expressed anger online and deemed the incident indecent. One even questioned on YouTube how Better was managing to get investment. At the time of the mass firing, Garg had cited market inefficiency and poor performance as the reasons. Better had announced it would go public in May 2021. However, the company has delayed the development amid the ongoing scrutiny.