Hindustan Times has found a chief executive for its Mumbai project. Ranganathan Thota is joining HT Media Limited from mid-January 2005 with the designation of Business Head (West & South).
An Engineer and MBA from Mumbai University, Ranga brings with him 16 years of rich experience, having worked in frontline consumer companies like GE, Whirlpool & Pepsi. Ranga's last assignment was with Pentair Water, a US company selling water systems, as Head of Home Business & VP-Marketing for South Asia.
Prior to Pentair, Ranga had worked for three years in China. After joining contests2win in Mumbai as COO, he moved to China as COO, contests2win (China). Thereafter, he helped establish Mobile2win in China, a wireless marketing company in which Siemens was an investor, and was its CEO. Mobile2win had clients like Coke, McDonald’s, Nokia, CNN, etc.
With this appointment, HT has taken one more significant step in rolling out its Mumbai edition. Recently, it had appointed Triveni Das as Head of Ad Sales, West & South. Welcoming Ranga’s appointment, Rajiv Verma, who joined as CEO, HT Media Limited, in October this year, said, "I am confident that with Ranga’s addition, the HT team will be strengthened and our leadership talent pool will be broadened so that we can grow our business at a rapid pace."
The progress of HT’s Mumbai edition is being closely followed in the print media. After all, the financial capital of the country has been the traditional home and bastion of the ‘Old Lady of Bori Bunder’, The Times of India as it is fondly referred to in that city. This promises to be the biggest fight in contemporary print media in the country. Having dared to go where others have not, Hindustan Times is pulling out all stops, including beefing up its war chest. It became one of the first newspaper houses to tie up foreign funding by giving a stake to a foreign entity after the FDI policy for print media was relaxed.