Ola, India’s most popular mobile app for transportation, today announced the appointment of Dr Badri Raghavan, a seasoned data scientist with over 20 years of extensive domain experience, as its Chief Data Scientist. As a company that holds a vast database of drivers, customers, and every single trip that takes place on its platform, Ola’s business is deeply rooted in data science and in drawing valuable insights to build innovative solutions that resonate with the needs of Indian consumers and driver partners alike.
Badri’s key responsibilities will include leading a world class Data Science team with cutting edge training in Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Decision Analysis, Pattern Recognition, and related areas. This team will work across various business units and departments to gain operational and business efficiencies, ranging from demand and supply prediction, driver behavior, and performance management to location Intelligence, to name a few.
With operations across 100 plus cities and more than 5 lakh driver partners on board, Ola has established a strong foundation of data and analytics. Building innovation based on insights gathered from Ola’s large scale of operations will, therefore, continue to prove critical to the company’s growth in the near future.
Ankit Bhati, CTO and Co-Founder, Ola, said, “Ola is moving on a much larger scale towards building technology based on deep insight into the Indian psyche, and for this, Big Data is a must. With a rich vein of expertise in data science and machine learning, Badri fits perfectly into Ola’s vision of building ground-up technology solution based on deep understanding of our customers, and building world-class, innovative solutions.”
“With over a million trips on the platform every single day, an enormous amount of data is available for us to utilize intelligently. Badri’s background and expertise will help mobilize our technology teams to leverage all kinds of internal, external, structured, and unstructured data to galvanize our market leadership in the ridesharing space,” Bhati added.
Dr Badri Raghavan, Chief Data Scientist, Ola, said of his appointment: “I am thrilled to be part of Ola, a company that has built world-class innovations and solutions, and has transformed the lives of hundreds of thousands of our fellow citizens. The potential to leverage the incredible wealth of unique data Ola has gathered to build better solutions that would facilitate superior customer experience and stimulate growth is immense. Ola Share is a classic example of leveraging big data to improve matching rates and minimise deviations. With the aim to build more such solutions and add value to existing ones, I am looking forward to building a world class team as we advance on our mission of building mobility for a billion Indians.”
Badri’s experience in the field of Data Science across multiple domains will play a key role in driving Ola’s next phase of innovation based on richer and deeper understanding of Indian consumer behaviour to serve their mobility needs.
Prior to Ola, Badri was the Chief Data Scientist and Founding CTO of FirstFuel Software, a leading energy and utilities analytics firm based out of Boston. Not only did Badri steer the development of the breakthrough energy analytics applications at FirstFuel, but he was also instrumental in establishing the overall technology vision and driving the firm’s growth in significant ways across three rounds of venture funding from leading VCs. Badri also worked with IBM Research in New York as the Associate Director, Energy and Utility Analytics, where he helped set a framework for IBM’s analytics driven Smart Grid applications. Badri has worked in FICO for nearly a decade, in leadership roles in analytics, product and operations. He was part of the founding team at FICO Bangalore, where he conceptualized, built and executed the strategy to develop Centre for Decision Analytics.