Following closely on the heels of the Voltas account win, Starcom has now bagged the Chennai-based Hatsun Agro account. The account moves from Mediaedge:cia. Industry sources peg the business at Rs 10 crore. The other agencies in the four-way pitch were Mudra's media arm OMS and RK Swamy/BBDO's Media Direction.
And, in order to handle the account, Starcom has advanced the opening of its Chennai office. Effective April 1, 2005, the Chennai office became operational, with Narendra Kumar Alambara, formerly of MPG, and popularly known as Naresh, heading it. Over the next few weeks, Starcom is likely to beef up its strength in Chennai by recruiting more talent.
Hatsun Agro, the largest private sector dairy in India, has regional brands such as Arokya milk and Arun Ice-cream, besides dairy products such as butter and packaged butter milk.
Said Ravi Kiran, Managing Director, India-South & West, Starcom Worldwide, "The largest part of the credit for Hatsun Agro's movement to us should go to Manish Porwal, our GM in charge of Investment and New Initiatives. It is his familiarity with and conviction about the Tamil Nadu media market that encouraged us to open an office there. And we are happy that Hatsun Agro put their confidence in us ahead of our Chennai office going operational. To run our operation there, we met almost all agency heads and finally chose Naresh, who is not only one of the smartest media strategists around, but also understands the Tamil Nadu market intimately."
Naresh, who has over 10 years of experience in Initiative Media and Media Planning Group (MPG) in Chennai, is a visiting faculty at Madras Ad Club's post-graduate diploma course in Advertising Management and also teaches at several other business schools in Chennai.