It’s PK as the new Mindshare South Asia boss!

02 Feb,2015


By A Correspondent


The poster of the Aamir Khan film PK was the first thing that came to our minds when one of the A&M media’s favourite sources alerted us of the winds of change that were blowing across the GroupM South Asia headquarters in North Mumbai.


Expectedly, the otherwise very responsive dramatis personae clammed up. Calls and text messages received no reply. Whatsapp messages got those two blue ticks, but not even the ‘typing’ indicator in response. But while we were sure of the news, we couldn’t carry it without a confirmation. So it waited from Wednesday to Thursday to the weekend.


There were also other things that were also grabbing our attention.


Prasanth Kumar

Ravi Rao

And then on Sunday evening, our inbox alert beeped. The message curiously asked us to embargo the news till 9pm. The news confirmed our earlier info: Leading media agency network Mindshare has appointed Prasanth Kumar as CEO, South Asia. He will take charge with effect from March 1, 2015. Ravi Rao, who is currently CEO, will be transitioning into a new role within GroupM, the details of which are to be announced soon.


So where’s Ravi Rao going? Back to the Gulf, we were told. If not within the fold, outside of it. The communiqué says he will transition to a new role within GroupM, but which clearly means negotiations are still on.


CVL Srinivas

Gowthaman Ragothaman

Kumar or PK, as he’s known in the fraternity, is currently Head of WPP-owned GroupM’s Central Trading Group and a member of the South Asia Executive Committee. As Mindshare South Asia leader, he will report into CVL Srinivas, CEO GroupM South Asia and Gowthaman Ragothaman, COO of Mindshare Asia Pacific. And who takes over from him, we asked the GroupM spokesperson. There are no names yet, but last year Jai Lala and Sidharth Parashar were elevated in the CTG team.


Meanwhile, this is what Srinivas on the announcement: “Prasanth was a unanimous choice for this role.  In the past 10 years, he has played a stellar role in ensuring GroupM’s scale is leveraged to maximise value for our clients. I’d like to thank Ravi Rao for his contribution and wish him the very best in his new role within the network.”


And here’s what Ragothaman (better known as GMan) commented on the change: “Ravi has done a fantastic job in growing our business in India in the last three years. India is at the inflexion point on digital, content, analytics, e-commerce and measurement and in Prasanth we have a seasoned veteran to lead Mindshare to the next level. And I am particularly happy that we continue to groom and grow talent from our larger GroupM ecosystem with diverse talent and experience to leadership positions, which speaks highly about our talent in the market place. In the past 10 years Prasanth Kumar has done a tremendous job scaling up GroupM’s CTG practice in South Asia, and developing strategic partnerships for GroupM that contribute to the successes of all GroupM agencies.”


Big Story image inspired by poster of the Raj Kumar Hirani film PK. Imaging by Rafiq, Poster courtesy: PK, the film, poster


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