It’s Piyush Pandey, Global CCO-designate, Ogilvy

14 Dec,2018


By Pradyuman Maheshwari


Greetings! It’ss D-Day. December 14, 2018. The day when we said we would announce the MxM India Mediaperson of the Year 2018. Since we don’t˜conduct an awards presentations offline, we aren’t subject to the demands of sponsors and the constraints that venues and budgets put us under. Like, say, the Time magazine’s Person of the Year, we too have just an online announcement. We are sure you will join us in the celebration of who our 2018 Mediaperson of the Year is.


But first an introduction and how we are different from various other awards/title presentations:


First, it’s not based on a survey. It’s not based on any industry poll. It’s based on a study conducted by us through the year. This makes the decision-making tougher, as we can’t pass the blame on to research. Or the collective view of the industry. Or of a jury.


Second, it’s an A&M industry study. Agreed CEOs of big clients are important, but we are looking at CMOs and not CEOs of well-marketed organisations.


Third, we look at performance through the year, and don’t base it on the highs of the last two quarters of a year which tend to influence any voting-based process at the yearend.


Fourth, it’s about performance in the year. The highs and highs achieved in this calendar year.


Fifth, we give you a clear reason why we have chosen the winner


Sixth, we are as sincere and honest about the awards as one can get. There were suggestions that we should make it an on-ground event. But then that comes with its own set of issues (and compulsions). We even had one large media group expressing its interest three years back. But we think it could’ve influenced our decision-making.


So: the MxMIndia Mediaperson of the Year 2018 is an online presentation. It’s an accolade that’s for the truly well-deserving. And for the True Achiever of 2018 in the Indian Media, Advertising & Marketing arena.


With the backgrounders done, here’s  how we went about our task.


We maintain an online notebook that records important developments of the year. It’s a drill that ensures one can do recaps etc with ease.


For the Mediaperson of the Year, one reviews names, quarter-wise. This ensures the choice of the winner doesn’t suffer from the recency factor.


We looked at various names. We couldn’t miss the achievements of the various media biggies as they went on consolidating operations.


We had also asked our readers for their nominations, and we added these to the come to a shortlist of five. And this is what it was:


1. Shashi Sinha, CEO, IPG Mediabrands and Chairman, RSCI: The successful launch of IRS 2018 and the fact that there was no bloodbath after that was thanks essentially to the great work done by Sinha, NP Sathyamurthy and others.


2. Uday Shankar: Star India Chairman and CEO Uday Shankar was elevated to President, 21st  Century  Fox, Asia. And on December 13, it was announced that he would be Chairman, Star and Disney India, and President, The Walt Disney Company Asia Pacific. This year saw Star acquiring more India cricket right and of course consolidate its hold in broadcast and digital.


3. Sandhya Menon, Vinta Nanda, Priya Ramani and all the women who spoke up: While it’s not just media and entertainment where there are perverts in the system, it required some guts for these women to speak up and inform the world that sexual harassment exists in a really big way in Indian M&E.


4. Ekta Kapoor: The lady who rules the Indian video software space, she has been achieving stupendous success through the years. And now set to make a mark in OTT land.


5. And then our fifth shortlist¦


Ladies and Gentlemen, We have great pride in announcing that the 2018 MxMIndia Mediaperson of the Year Award is¦.


Piyush Pandey. Global Chief Creative Officer-designate and India boss of Ogilvy (specifically: Executive Chairman & Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy South Asia)


Piyush Pandey

There is no disputing the fact he is the clear #1 in creative advertising in the country. There are several greats that exist in India, but Pandey is numero uno. In June this year, at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creative, Piyush Pandey and brother Prasoon were awarded the Lion of St Mark.


Earlier this month December 5, to be precise, Ogilvy announced that Pandey has been appointed as the agency’s next Chief Creative Officer, Worldwide effective January 1, 2019.


This is by far the biggest announcement in the marketing services business ever. For a resident Indian to become the global creative boss of an agency of the calibre of an Ogilvy is huge.


Over the years, Pandey has nurtured several creative geniuses in the Ogilvy fold. Business-wise too Ogilvy is doing well, despite an overall slowdown in the creative agency business. There have been some good wins like BMW, Xiaomi, Taco Bell, Bank Bazaar.


The good things for us in India is that despite a worldwide posting, Pandey isn’t going anywhere. He will continue to be based in Mumbai. And he will continue to chair India operations even as his travels across the world will increase.


A truly deserving winner of the 2018 MxMIndia Mediaperson of the Year title.


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