Sindhuja Rai has been roped in as General Manager and new head of Bangalore operations of Publicis Groupe-owned Starcom MediaVest Group. Rai, who joined from December 4, takes over from Indraneel Dutta, who had quit due to health reasons. She would be reporting to Manish Porwal, who in January 2007 is slated to take over as Managing Director, South and West India, of Starcom.
Rai brings with her a decade’s experience in media. She was nominated as one of the top 10 future leaders of the industry by an industry publication in 2003. Prior to joining Starcom MediaVest Group Rai was with Lintas Media Group, Bangalore, where she was instrumental in setting up Interactions, and on last count, was looking after the AOR for ITC’s New Business Division.
Manish Porwal, Executive Director, India-West, said, “Starcom is a confluence of experience and youth, and Starcom Bangalore is envied for its passionate team that has kept clients and consumers thoroughly engaged. What made us choose Sindhuja for the role was the fact that she had the experience and a keen understanding of the craft and the market and was equally enthusiastic to unlearn and then learn the tomorrow of communication that we are keen to get ready for.”
He further said, “We are sure she will add even more strength to the team’s understanding of media and client business. It is an honour to have someone who has been recognised as one of the future leaders of the industry. She is now leading our Bangalore office. It is our privilege to give her what the critics had identified her for.”
Commenting on her new role, Rai said, “With increasing media fragmentation and division of consumer attention span, delivering communication to the consumer is becoming even more challenging. What intrigued me was that Starcom seems to have understood this challenge much better than most others and have invested resources in working out capabilities to deliver holistic communications solutions to get that attention. What captivated me finally was the overawing vibe that one gets the moment you step into any SMG office and you realise what passion, focus and teamwork means. I am delighted to join this team, which understands the future and is, in true a sense, a communications specialist. I am looking forward to a professional re-birth here.”
Rai, who has an MBA in communication from NMIMS, Mumbai, has earlier worked with the Lintas Media Group as Business Director and Madison Media as Group Head. She was involved in setting up of Interactions, a brand for Lintas Media Group, and had serviced the ITC Foods Business (planning and buying) independently between 2002 and 2004.
She began her career with Madison, where she was a Senior Media Planner working on the P&G account and was instrumental in creating the media property ‘P&G Teen Times’. She then moved to Quadrant Communications for a year to work on accounts like Nirlep, Kirloskar Companies, and Parakh Foods, among others. Rai joined Madison again in May 2000, where she worked on accounts like P&G and Godrej Sara Lee. She has worked in Mumbai and Bangalore.