Dentsu India CCO Malvika Mehra moves on

Mehra will be exploring newer opportunities across Content, Design, Digital and OTT space

e4m by Neeta Nair
Published: Jul 13, 2020 8:20 AM  | 4 min read

Malvika Mehra, Chief Creative Officer (CCO) of Dentsu India, has decided to quit the agency. Sources have told exchange4media that Mehra put in her papers a couple of months ago. She had joined Dentsu Aegis Network in April last year after running her own independent design venture Tomorrow Creative Lab for two years. July will be Mehra's last month at Dentsu India.
Confirming the development to exchange4media, Mehra said, “I’d like to thank DAN and Simi (Sabhaney) for the opportunity, and whilst it has been undoubtedly an exciting one year here, I have decided to move on. I believe that the best work comes from agencies with a firm bedrock of a thriving creative culture. In the past year here, that has been my focus and whilst cultures are not built overnight, despite my short stint here, I’d like to believe that we did cover some distance there. Whether it has been attracting good talent, winning pitches across our four offices - Bangalore, Mumbai, Chennai and Kochi- or just better work on the table.”
She added, “I am happy that I’m leaving behind a robust second line in creative with Krishna Mani leading our South operations, thrilled that we’ve recently won some robust businesses despite the lockdown and that our work is looking admittedly better across brands - Flying Machine (F-Lite,The Split), Ashiana Housing (Eve-Teasing), Pigeon Cookware, TVS Motors, Toyota, ITC Fabelle (Skater seal). Finally, we are in a people’s business and what’s been most gratifying for me here is the strong client relationships I’ve managed to build with some of these clients and some of the folks at Dentsu India in a short time. If the farewell notes that I got from some of the kids across account management, HR, film and creative are any indication, I’d like to believe, I’ve probably done something right. Am leaving a happy mamma!"
Simi Sabhaney, CEO, Dentsu India, said, “Malvika wanted to explore newer opportunities in Content, Digital and OTT space and that is why she decided to move on. She will be leaving by the middle of this month. We wish Malvika the very best for her future endeavours. We will be announcing senior creative leadership, with a bigger mandate, rather soon.”
While appointing Mehra as the CCO last year, Dentsu India had also launched a new design and innovation unit called Dentsu India Tomorrow Lab which was headed by her, thereby integrating the agency she had founded in 2016 with DAN. However, with Mehra leaving the firm, the agency brand will no more be under the Dentsu umbrella.
Sabhaney explained, “Yes, Tomorrow Creative Lab was her baby and will move back with her. There is no implication of this movement on any of our clients.”
Talking about her future plans, Malvika Mehra said, “The world as we know has changed drastically in the last few months. And with that, so has the brand landscape, be it the business itself or the communication needs around it. As creative folk, I think there can’t be a better time than now to embrace this change and perhaps relook at our roles in helping clients bring alive these brand engagements with a fresher, more relevant lens. With that in mind, I’m exploring some opportunities both, in and outside of advertising, across digital and OTT platforms, design, content and maybe even sitting across the table with the client herself. Who knows! A lot of conversations are admittedly on. You know there’s that famous Chinese saying, ‘May you live in interesting times’. Well, here they are. And I am excited about what unfolds for me. And yes, I am taking Tomorrow Creative Lab along with me. Shall keep you posted.”

In a career spanning more than two decades, Malvika Mehra has successfully partnered with clients in building famous brands across agencies like Ogilvy and Grey, her independent venture Tomorrow Creative Lab and most recently Dentsu India. She has been a juror at Cannes thrice (for print, film and most recently for design in 2019). And in the past, has served on other juries including Clio, Spikes Asia etc. She is a highly awarded creative herself, being a two-time Cannes Gold Lion and D&AD pencil winner.

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