The Anchor: 11 noteworthy happenings of 2011

30 Dec,2011

By Tuhina Anand


#1 The Dentsu deal. This was one of the earliest developments of 2011, creating a buzz when Sandeep Goyal made a fortune after selling his 26 percent stake in Dentsu India. Denstu Inc, the Japanese company which had a JV with Goyal’s Mogae Group became the sole owner. This development later saw some senior appointments like Rohit Ohri moving out of JWT to be the Executive Chairman of Dentsu Group India and much recently appointed Divya Gupta as the CEO of Dentsu Media.


#2 World Cup comes home. India gave a stupendous show of its cricketing prowess when it lifted the World Cup. The series was a great opportunity for advertisers to get maximum eyeballs while ESPN Star Sports got the status of the official broadcaster of the series. Captain Cool, MSD walked away not just with the cup but also was given the title of the most influential Indian in Time’s list. Not to forget all the endorsement deals that the Indian team got post the win.


#3 UTV-Disney deal. This was the mother of all deals when Walt Disney declared to buy stakes of UTV Software Communications. The deal is valued to be around Rs 2000 crore. Walt Disney already had a majority stake in UTV. The former will launch an offer to delist shares of the latter which will begin early next year.


#4 Tough time for Kalaignar TV. The DMK run Kalaignar TV was in the news albeit for the wrong reasons. It got dragged in the 2G spectrum license episode and the brand took a further dip with its MD Sharad Kumar behind bars. This was one incident that Kalaignar would like to forget but its easier said than done especially because its taxpayers money that has been misused if the paper trail is proved correct.


#5 Appointments and Dis-appointments. Ashish Bagga was elected President of The Indian Newspaper Society for the year 2011-Uday Shankar of Star India for was re-elected as the President of the Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) for his second term. Also Shashi Sinha of Lodestar was elected as the President of Ad Club Bombay. After being with TV Today Network for almost 16 years, G Krishnan, the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director quit. Haresh Chawla, the CEO of Network18 Group too decided to call it a day. Meanwhile Raj Nayak filled in the place left vacant by Rajesh Kamat when he took over as the CEO for Colors.


#6 Justice Katju’s policing. Press Council Chairman, Justice Markandeya Katju had earned the ire of media by constantly trying to police media and gag the freedom of press. His suggestions to bring media under strict government purview and his thoughts on objectionable content had many in media being vociferous in their protest.


#7 Rise of independents. The year marked the rise of independents in the advertising agency business who did well and earned name purely on their talent be it Taproot India with their fabulous work on Airtel and Pepsi or Creativeland Asia winning applauds at international awards arena.


#8 AdAsia in Delhi. Delhi became the place to be for the advertising folks from around Asia who gathered for AdAsia. It was in 2003 that AdAsia was held in India in Jaipur and it came back only in 2011. The lineup of speakers was enviable and the number of delegates impressive. Thus a stimulating conference for all present.


#9 Omnicom stake in Mudra. The Omnicom Group that has been trying to gain greater foothold in India managed to do so by taking a majority stake in Mudra. Post this Mudra also made its first structural change where it would be known as DDB Mudra and have DDB, Mudra, and Mudra Max under its umbrella.


#10 Bobby and JWT shake hands. Bobby Pawar declared his intention to move out of Mudra soon after the Omnicom deal, thus giving enough fodder to the media to speculate on. His next destination is JWT and promptly Colvyn Harris took the opportunity to set his agency in order and went appointing three NCDs and a CCO at the helm. They sure will have their hands full in the New Year.


#11 Anna Hazare’s magic. Who would have thought that a septuagenarian clad in Gandhi topi would become the most recognized face of 2011 and maybe even scoring more than Salman Khan in his meteoric rise to popularity? Not to mention that his fasts and LokPal Bill has taken enough of newsprint and debates on TV and has become a trending topic on the social media.

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