Despite the pandemic, India continued to contribute incredibly: Gordon Domlija

Domlija, CEO, APAC at Wavemaker, noted that 25-30% growth for APAC came from India alone during the pandemic

e4m by Naziya Alvi Rahman
Published: Jun 23, 2021 9:21 AM  | 11 min read
gordon domlija

In today's edition of 'The Resilience Story,' e4m editor Naziya Alvi Rahman speaks to Gordon Domlija, the CEO, APAC at Wavemaker. He opens up about retaining and growing businesses, India's contributions to APAC, the relevance of awards and, above all, maintaining the human touch in a world ravaged by the pandemic. 

Your agency has been doing reasonably well, despite the pandemic. You have recently retained L'Oreal in India, which is a very big account. You have Mondelez and many other big advertisers in India. How is India contributing to your overall growth for APAC?

First of all, I'm going to correct you because, rather than "reasonably", I would say "remarkably" and "astonishingly", given the circumstances and the context of where we are.

For me, the key story here is about resilience, learning attitude and aptitude, which focuses on people, and the truly outstanding work that they deliver despite the circumstances.

We are a young company.  A lot of our strength and our growth over the last couple of years have been focused on our ability and our agility to drive outcomes, different ideas, and different ways of working that really resonate with clients, as their businesses, consumers and the whole media ecosystem change.

Right now, India has truly, remarkably, (given the situation) has continued to contribute incredibly. One of the really fascinating things about what's happening in India is that business really hasn't slowed down, at all. Now, it feels like businesses are going full steam ahead in the amount of pitching we do in the original publication. I really feel that business hasn't slowed down at all.

Now, in terms of total numbers, India represents about 20% of our business in the Asia Pacific. And in terms of the growth, it's contributing even in the COVID period and has been ahead of its size. Around 25-30% of our total growth is coming from India at the moment.

L'Oreal, which is a critical piece of business, not only in India but across the world. When we have a huge ambition as an agency, you always want to be tied with brands with huge ambition, who challenge you. They put you under pressure, but that's the only way you learn and grow.

If you look at the other retentions around Heinz and Cedars, we've done very well. If you look at the number of start-ups and tech companies that have contributed to the growth of the new economy businesses, I'm really seeing India at a cusp of a technological and digital revolution. 

But the situation in India in the last two months was bad. As you know, we had that second wave, and it was far more damaging than the first in terms of personal loss and overall sentiment. How much did it impact? 

When you're talking about business, it's very difficult for me to separate the human element from the business element, because it's very easy to fall into a trap of talking about just business.

Nothing's happening, because, in reality, business does go on. Now, all of our clients are still operating, people still own businesses and we're still part of a massive global economy. So, things have to keep progressing, despite what is happening at a human level.

What we've been very good at doing, is making sure we prioritize a human element through this period and the effects that it is having on people since we're a people’s business. To me, looking after them has been the priority over this period.

But with that said, people have still been wanting to occupy themselves with work. People still want to keep busy and feel like they're doing something, achieving something and growing. So in reality, what I'd say is, it hasn't really slowed us down. If anything, it's made us think differently about how we work. And we are doing things very differently.

But if you look at our team in India, they are just fantastic. And, you know, Ajay (Gupte), as our CEO in South Asia, has done a fantastic job in unifying the business, in creating a community spirit around the business and sharing the pride and the optimism that they have about the work that they're doing. I mean, you see the work that we do, particularly something like Mondelez, it's really second to none. So I'm immensely proud of them and of what they've achieved.

In the last one-and-a-half years, all of us have been affected by the pandemic. India has been one of the worst affected. However, in the APAC, which markets have proven to be more resilient than the others?

I feel remarkably lucky, being based in China, I'm based in Shanghai. And other than the original outbreak, and then some sort of very sensible, regimented way of getting back to a full working environment; We haven't been in any sort of lockdown or restriction for well over a year now. So business here has accelerated.

For a lot of global brands, you realize now the importance of China, particularly when it comes to luxury brands and consumption. China has taken the bulk of sales in the world now. Over 50% of all luxury sales are contributed by China. So there's resilience here, but that is circumstantial.

The borders are still relatively closed here, and categories like travel and tourism have been most affected. But a huge new industry has developed around internal tourism and this has more than made up for the gap and that includes travel, retail, etc. And particularly in China, we had a lot of travel clients. So that hit us quite hard last year. The country has been remarkable in the ability to just create a new economy, from the circumstances that they're in.

APAC for Asia Pacific is far from a homogenous region. Some regions or some markets are affected very directly. If you look at the contribution of travel and tourism to Thailand, you know that it knocks off 25% of the GDP of the country. So, some markets are genuinely suffering.

Where would you place India in this context and which APAC market can India learn its lessons from? 

From a business perspective, I have really seen India accelerate, I think, they are taking a lot of cues from how China has grown particularly around commerce around the route to market. I think India has always been a country that is very quick to pick up and accelerate. We've seen that, despite the inability to actually get people in an office and do any sort of formal learning or training.

In these areas, India has just picked up very fast out of necessity. And I see that the acceleration part is very similar to what it looked like in China a couple of years ago. IPL is still a massive driver of media and of consumption.

India has that optimism and I think that has helped massively this year. There's no one who isn't optimistic: “Don't worry, IPL is coming back in September, and then we've got the holidays.”

From a business perspective, it's been positive in terms of how accelerated our thinking and our ability to be creative are. Honestly, I'm blown away by the work that we do there, and the creativity of our people there.

India has always been a Creative Media hub. China I would say is far less creative. It's much more performance orientated. Whereas if I look at India, the creativity, the storytelling, that comes out of our teams in India is incredible and leads the world genuinely.

In every adversity, lies an opportunity. So what, according to you, will be the biggest opportunity for advertisers in media and the post pandemic world? How do you see the media business evolve?

Things have developed now, around not only platforms, communications and the ability to target very precisely, but also story-creation around your messaging. I look at how we already do things in China, and it's dominated by platforms, how you have conversations on platforms, how you actually build an organic conversation.

So increasingly, that moved from mass public debate domain into more private ones -- how people talk to each other and how brands interact with people's lives in those channels.

So for us, while storytelling is the output, there is a lot of data and analytics that has to go into understanding where your customers are, and how they will react to certain mysteries, and test and learn at a massive scale.

We work with a lot of traditional FMCGs and not so long ago, there was a clear IMC process, which still felt very modern. People will continue to expect to have experiences in the digital space. As the doors and retail open up, you'll see a lot more integration of the auto, in terms of what an online experience looks like, as compared to an experience in-store.

You'll see far more investment into actual experience centres, in retail and destination. We’re already seeing that in China. To me, that integration and that merging of the online world and offline world and how that comes together is a massive opportunity for brands. They're the brands that grow.

The agency partners that you pick will be the ones who are specialized in that area, who understand what our consumer journey looks like for a digital world, for a real-world or how to connect with people, and how to influence them through that journey. 

Wavemaker did exceedingly well at Cannes in 2019. How aggressively are you participating this time and what are your expectations from the first virtual version of the awards?

So we did very well in 2019 led by some Huawei campaigns that drove excellent results and performance in the awards. This time around, it's a new era in terms of how these things work.

I've never been to Cannes, so I don't really know what the physical experience is like. For me, awards are a fantastic recognition of our people. And I would encourage them to take pride in what they've done. I would rather have a very healthy business than a bunch of awards is always my mentality. Awards are your cherry on top.

Globally, we have 25 entries, and 13 of them are from India. It just goes to show that this is our entire global network, over half the awards are from India. I'm really, again, super proud of the teams and the efforts, but you can see the work we're doing. With Mondelez, the work has been outstanding and well documented. I hope that we bring home, a lot of heavy metal for our teams. 

Coming back to the pandemic, what did you do, as an agency, for your employees here in India? 

There are two ways to raise funds. Firstly, you've got direct support. Some of the direct support is around what we've done around APAC, globally, at the WPP level, at group level, and at an agency level. I think there've been some fantastic fundraising events, fundraising initiatives, which were driven particularly when the need for oxygen was at its highest.

But how we were able to purchase and get these things into the country. As you know, infrastructure wise, sometimes India is not the easiest to navigate when you're actually trying to deliver support from outside of the country. From that perspective, as a group, we came together quickly in terms of fundraising, trying to get things on the ground and to our people directly.

Our talent and Human Resources teams have been absolutely phenomenal, in doing everything they can to find hospital beds for the people and their families. There was a central sort of helpline, which anyone could be in touch with, not just from Wavemaker, but from our entire organization.

There was the extension of health insurance to ensure that everyone was covered within our organization, which was a major move. The responses that I've seen have been nothing short of miraculous.

On the other side, it's also about demonstrating empathy to people who are suffering. Work isn't the most important thing in your life. Your life and your family are. As an organization, a great thing to say is: "Prioritize yourself, self-care, and family care are the most important things in life. Work, noise, will always be there."


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Laqshya Pitch CMO Awards 2023 celebrates the finest marketing leaders

The awards honoured game changers in the marketing industry for their innovative, creative and outstanding works

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 24, 2023 9:59 PM   |   4 min read

Pitch CMO

The Laqshya Pitch CMO Awards 2023 celebrated the best minds in the marketing industry in India on Friday in Mumbai. The dazzling awards night was graced with the presence of top leaders, industry heads and experts from a wide cross-section of marketing, media and brands.

The awards recognise marketing leaders for their exceptional and innovative marketing efforts. The Laqshya Pitch CMO Awards celebrate the stars of the marketing domain for their outstanding creativity, strategic thinking, and impactful content.

The title sponsor of the event was Laqshya Media Group and it was co-powered by Vserv, WebEngage and Bharat Express. The growth partner of the event was Mobavenue and the performance partner was Admattic. 

The marketing leaders were recognised across 13 different categories for their outstanding work throughout 2022. The winners are decided by some of the finest minds in the industry for their works in the past year, using a set of metrics based on performance, their marketing strategies, financials and in-category success.

In the ‘The CMO Leadership Award’ category, the five winners were Abbey Thomas, Head of Marketing & PR, Volkswagen Passenger Cars, Anupama Ahluwalia, Chief Marketing & Customer Services Officer, Reliance Retail Limited, Deepali Naair, Group CMO, CK Birla Group and Nilesh Malani, President and Chief Marketing Officer, Polycab India Ltd, and Mayank Shah, Sr. Category Head at Parle Products Pvt. Ltd.

The ‘The CMO Transformation Award’ category had four winners - Abhishek Gupta, Chief Marketing Officer, Edelweiss Tokio Life Insurance, Shuvadip Banerjee, Chief Digital Marketing Officer, ITC Ltd (Foods Division), Sunayan Mitra, Director (General Manager) Coffee & Beverages Business, Nestlé, South Asia Region, Vishu Goel, Associate Vice President Sales, Marketing & Commercial, Asian Paints.

A total of three winners bagged the award in The ‘CMO Growth Award’ category. The winners were Ashish Mishra, EVP – Marketing, ACKO, Shamik Banerjee, Chief Marketing Officer, Apollo 24x7 and Utsav Malhotra, Chief Operating Officer, Nexxbase.

The ‘CMO Innovation Award’ category had three winners- Gaurav Anand, Chief Digital & Marketing Officer, L'oreal India, Shivani Behl, Chief Marketing Officer, Plum (PurePlay) and Virat Khullar, Group Head Marketing, Hyundai.

In the ‘CMO Customer Experience Award’ category, a total of five best minds were awarded. The winners included Anuj Sharma, Chief Marketing Officer, Xiaomi India, Avneesh Khosla, Chief Marketing Officer, Vodafone Idea Ltd., Deepti Sampat, VP Marketing, Tata SIA, Ranjivjit Singh, Chief Growth Officer (CGO), Hero MotoCorp and Kartikeya Bhandari, Chief Marketing officer, Livspace.

In the ‘CMO Digital Marketing Award’ category, three marketing minds were honoured. Anuj Arora, Chief Marketing Officer, Symphony Limited, Jennifer Pandya, VP – Marketing, CaratLane - A Tanishq Partnership and Vishal Subharwal, Chief Marketing Officer and Group Head - Strategy, HDFC Life are the winners.

The ‘CMO Content Engagement Award’ category had a total of four winners. They were Ankit Desai, Chief Marketing Officer, Hershey India, Anuja Mishra, Chief Marketing Officer, Honasa Consumer, Darshana Shah, Head-Marketing and Customer Experience, Aditya Birla Capital and Maneesh Krishnamurthy,  Head of Marketing (Eyecare), Titan.

In the ‘A Futuristic CMO: Retention-First Thinker Award’ category, three winners, including Geetanjali Kothari, Head of Marketing & Corporate Communications, Bharti AXA Life Insurance, Mahuya Chaturvedi, Chief Marketing Officer and Online Business Head, Baggit and MVS Murthy, Chief Marketing Officer, Federal Bank, were awarded.

In the ‘The CMO Experiential Marketing Award’ category, three marketing leaders have been awarded. The winners in this category include Kavitha Ganesan, General Manager – Marketing, TVS Eurogrip, Rahul Singh, Vice President & Head of Marketing, SAP and Vineet Sharma, Vice President- Marketing & Trade Marketing, AB InBev India have been honoured.

Meanwhile, four winners including Abhishek Jugran, Vice President-Marketing, Dabur India, Jaya Jamrani, Vice President – Marketing, Castrol India, Sachin Chhabra, Head of Brand Marketing, ACC Limited, and Sooraj Balakrishnan, Head – Marketing, Acer India and Bangladesh Acer have been awarded in the ‘CMO Sustainability Award’ category.

In the ‘The CMO Social Responsibility Award’ category, Amit Doshi, Chief Marketing Officer, Britannia Industries Ltd. and Jaswinder Sodhi, Head of Customer Propositions Digital & Marketing - Wealth & Personal Banking India, HSBC were given the award.

‘The CMO Creator Ecosystem Award’ category had two winners- Damyant Singh Khanoria,Chief Marketing Officer, OPPO India and Raunika Malhotra, President Marketing and Corporate Communication, Lodha Group.

In the last category, i.e., the ‘CMO Rising Star Award’ category, three lucky winners were bestowed with the big honour. The winners in this category include Amritansu Nanda, Chief Marketing Officer, Zepto, Pooja Baid, Chief Marketing Officer, Versuni and Vijay Kumar Pampana, Director, Head of Marketing Department     Procter & Gamble Health Limited.

Here’s the complete list of Laqshya Pitch CMO Awards 2023 winners:

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Raymond’s communication strategy has always reflected the mood of India: Sunil Kataria

The CEO of Raymond Lifestyle delivered a keynote speech at the Pitch CMO Summit in Mumbai on Friday

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 24, 2023 1:35 PM   |   3 min read

Sunil Kataria

The Raymond Group and its communication strategy have evolved gradually over the last 97 years, reflecting the mood of the nation in all its ad campaigns, said Sunil Kataria, the CEO of Raymond Lifestyle, at the Pitch CMO summit in Mumbai on Friday.

Speaking to a bunch of CMOs and other marketers at the Summit organised by exchange4media, Kataria in his keynote speech informed the audience that Raymond was established in 1925 as “Raymond Woollen Mills” in Thane and the group will mark a century in two years. 

“The company used to make blankets and woollen fabric. It wasn’t doing good business when Lala Kailashpat Singhania acquired it in 1944. The company tapped the mood of the nation and became part of the nation-building thereafter,” Kataria explained, sharing glimpses of the old Mills and the brand’s marketing strategy. 

From a woollen blanket producer, Raymond has not only evolved into an iconic textile brand but has also become a diversified conglomerate. 

He deliberated how the brand has kept pace with the times and remained relevant to an ever-changing customer profile. 

“It was the post-independence era with the country full of hope, optimism and new experiences when the company adopted Chess King Motifs in 1959 which became brand identity”, Kataria noted. 

“In the 1970s when the country was under emergency and unrest, giving rise to the success of angry-man films of Amitabh Bachchan, we decided to go beyond product promotion and focused on brand-building,” Kataria said, adding that Raymond campaigns at that time sought to build the narrative of masculinity through gentleman, just opposite to the angry man phenomenon of those days. 

In the 1980s Raymond came up with its first ad campaign titled ‘The guide to a well-dressed male,’ targeting flamboyant men. But it was ‘The Complete Man’ campaign launched in the 1990s that took the brand to the pinnacle of glory.

The campaign, which coincided with India’s economic liberalisation, grabbed the attention of aspiring young men to the growing big brand.

From Chess King Motifs in 1959 to iconic “Complete Man” in the 1990s to “Feels like Heaven” in 2010 to “Celebration time” of Ethnyx by Raymond in post-Covid time, the company’s communication strategy always reflects the mood of the nation, said the leader. 

Kataria also explained how the company opened its first store in Ballard Estate of Mumbai in 1958 when the concept of a  B2C retail store was unheard of.  Sensing the mood and aspirations of Indians, the company later expanded across the country with 1,100 stores. 

“Our decision to enter into ethnic wear also arises from sensing the mood of the nation. In the post covid time, celebrations and demand for ethnic wear have gone up. That’s why we decided to enter the segment by supporting the Ethnyx brand,” Kataria said, adding that the Ethnyx by Raymond already has 70 stores across the country and now plans to open 200 more stores in the next 8-9 months. 

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Happening Today: Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai back with on-ground edition after 3 years

The theme of this edition of the conference is ‘The Agile Marketer’

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 24, 2023 8:05 AM   |   5 min read

Pitch CMO

exchange4media Group is back with the on-ground Mumbai edition of its flagship property - Pitch CMO Summit after three years. The upcoming edition of the conference will be held Tomorrow, 24th of March, 2023 from 10 am onwards. Fancode WebEngage and ABP News are the Co-Powered by Partners for the summit while the Co-Gold Partners are DoubleVerify,  Pepper Content & Torc ai. 

Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai 2023 brings India's most reputed brands and top management to interact and share insights on their game-changing success stories under one roof.

The theme of this edition of the conference is ‘The Agile Marketer’.

With the evolution of digital technology and Web3, marketers today have endless possibilities to explore which come with a sea of challenges. This era of heightened exposure has also made brands vulnerable, demanding them to be transparent and putting them under the pressure to provide a seamless experience to consumers in a VUCA environment. Therefore, it is imperative for marketers to adopt a new approach - Agile marketing, a tactical marketing approach, where marketing teams collectively identify high-value projects to focus upon and put in their collective efforts.

At the Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai 2023, we aim to understand the various aspects of ‘Agile Marketing’, how it helps marketers adapt to the ever-evolving market and consumer sentiments, and ensure a seamless consumer experience across the board. We also aim to understand how marketers can be more agile in their approach, how they can have a focused outlook on customer value and business outcomes, and how agile marketing is the need of the hour for this dynamic environment.

Below is the complete agenda for the Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai 2023. The award felicitation ceremony of the Pitch Best CMO Awards 2023 will follow the conference.


Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai 2023

Friday, March 24, 2023, Taj Santacruz


Theme: The Agile Marketer

08:00 a.m. – 09:00 a.m.



09:00 a.m. – 09:30 a.m.



09:30 a.m. –

09:40 a.m.



09:40 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Welcome Address

Co-Founder & Director, exchange4media Group

10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Keynote Session

The Story of ‘The Complete Man’


Chief Executive Officer - Lifestyle Business, Raymond

10:30 a.m – 10:55 a.m.

Special Address

Tata Soulfull: Reviving Goodness With Taste, Health & Agility


Co-Founder & Chief Marketing Officer,

Tata Consumer Soulfull Private Limited

10:55 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Spotlight Session

Content ROI With & Beyond Generative AI


Head of Brand & Partnerships,

Pepper Content

11:15 a.m. – 11:35 a.m.

Spotlight Session

Many Industry Firsts With VI Ads

Executive Director - New Business, TorcAI

Head of Revenue, TorcAI


11:35 a.m. – 11:55 p.m.

Spotlight Session

End of Broadcasting, Beginning of Conversations


Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Convosight

11:55 p.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Spotlight Session

Rise of the MarTech EXPLORERS & Insights From the State of MarTech In India


EVP, Mirum India

12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.

Panel Discussion

Adopting Agile Marketing: Need For A Mindset Shift


Managing Director – APAC, Nepa



Joint Chief Executive Officer , Mirum India



Vice President - Marketing, Castrol India



Vice President and Head, Marketing & Communications - South Asia, Mastercard



GM- Marketing, Clovia



Head – Marketing & Digital, Hindi Mass Entertainment, Viacom18



Chief Marketing Officer, WOW Skin Science



Co-Founder, Profitwheel


Session Chair: JAITI HARIANI

Sales Director, DoubleVerify

1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.



2:15 p.m. – 2:40 p.m.

Fireside Chat

How Futuristic CMOs Are Building The Right Martech Stack

Head of Marketing, ICICI Securities

in conversation with

VP - Customer Success, WebEngage

2:40 p.m.– 3:00 p.m.

Spotlight Session

Insightful Storytelling With Agile Marketing


Chief Marketing Officer, Britannia Industries

3:00 p.m. –3:20 p.m.

Spotlight Session

The Future of Marketing with Consumer Data


Chief Digital & Marketing Officer, L’Oréal India

3:20 p.m.-

3:40 p.m

Spotlight Session

How Mondelez India Marries Ideas & Technology For Brand Building?


VP - Marketing, Mondelez India

3:40 p.m –

3:50 p.m.

Spotlight Session

Decoding Your Profitable Customers With Consumer Intelligence


Co-Founder, Profitwheel

3:50 p.m. – 4:50 p.m.

Panel Discussion

The Playbook for Building Agile Brands


Chief Marketing Officer, Symphony


Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer, VServ


General Manager – Marketing,

TVS Eurogrip



Director & Head of Marketing, P&G Health India



AVP & Group Head – Marketing, Hyundai Motor India Limited



Co-Founder, FanCode


Session Chair: NIKHIL KUMAR

Vice President - India, SEA & ME, mediasmart

4:50 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Special Address

Zepto: Revolutionizing The Way India Shops Groceries Online


Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer, ZEPTO

5:15 p.m. –5:45 p.m.

Fireside Chat

Pepperfry: Re-inventing How India Shops For Furniture


Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Pepperfry

in conversation with

Co-Founder & Director, exchange4media Group

5:45 p.m. – 6:45 p.m.

Tea Break


6:45 p.m.


Pitch Best CMO Awards


For more details, please check out the microsite:


To attend the summit and awards, get in touch with or


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Kalyan Jewellers announces Rashmika Mandanna as brand ambassador

Mandanna will be the face of the brand in south India

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 6:07 PM   |   2 min read


Kalyan Jewellers has announced the appointment of Rashmika Mandanna as its brand ambassador for the South, representing Kalyan’s lifestyle segment.

Mandanna is a popular actor in South India and has made her mark in the Hindi film industry with her recent releases. With this appointment, she joins the likes of Amitabh Bachchan (Global Ambassador), Katrina Kaif (National Ambassador), Nagarjuna (Andhra & Telengana), Prabhu (Tamil Nadu), Shivaraj Kumar (Karnataka) and Kalyani Priyadarshan (Kerala) and other renowned celebrities who have been associated with Kalyan Jewellers, the company said.

Commenting on the appointment, Ramesh Kalyanaraman, Executive Director of Kalyan Jewellers, said, “We are thrilled to have Rashmika Mandanna as our brand ambassador for the Telugu, Kannada and Tamil Nadu markets. Together will Kalyani Priyadarshan, she will be the face of our lifestyle jewellery line up, and we are confident that her popularity and appeal will help us connect with a wider audience and strengthen our brand further.”

Rashmika Mandanna expressed her excitement about the association and said, “I am thrilled to be part of Kalyan Jewellers, one of India’s most trusted and leading jewellery brands, and to join the ranks of other esteemed brand ambassadors such as Amitabh Bachchan, Prabhu Ganesan, Nagarjuna and more. It is an honour to represent a brand that has established itself as a hallmark of trust and transparency. I have always been fascinated by the exquisite designs and craftsmanship of Kalyan Jewellers and I look forward to being a part of Kalyan Jewellers’ journey towards excellence.”

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Usha International partners with Mumbai Indians

This is the 10th consecutive year of the partnership

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 4:25 PM   |   2 min read


Usha International has announced it will continue it official partnership with five-time-champions, Mumbai Indians men’s cricket team, for the 10th consecutive year. The much-awaited cricket tournament gets underway on March 31, 2023, with the Mumbai Indians playing their first game on April 2, 2023.

Aligning perfectly with Usha’s ‘Play’ ethos, the partnership bears testimony to Usha’s commitment to support and promote a culture of sports and athletics, as well as an active and healthy lifestyle, the company said.

This season will have 70 league games and 4 playoff games, played across 12 venues over the course of 52 days. As part of the association, the ‘USHA’ logo will be prominently visible on the caps and helmets of all Mumbai Indians players. The ‘Usha Play’ branding will be visible on perimeter boards and screens during the match.

Speaking on the partnership, Komal Mehra, Head – Sports Initiatives and Associations, Usha International said, “To reach a decade-long association with Mumbai Indians is a milestone that echoes the mutual respect and alignment of both brands. It further reiterates our dedication to nurturing sports and developing a sporting ecosystem via strategic partnerships. The Mumbai Indians franchisee displays the true spirit of sportsmanship, and its players are role models for the youth, inspiring them to lead active and healthy lives. We wish the players the best of luck and look forward to witnessing some high adrenalin games this season!”

The Mumbai Indians Spokesperson said, “We are pleased to continue our long-standing partnership with Usha International. This is a strong and valuable relationship has made them such an integral partner in our journey. Mumbai Indians are glad to be a platform that helps partners leverage and maximise the plethora of opportunities available, helping them reach a wide demographic of fans.”

Led by Rohit Sharma, who is captaining Mumbai Indians for the 10th season, the team continues to have a strong mix of experienced as well as exciting young talent, donning the iconic blue and gold including Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Tilak Varma, Jasprit Bumrah, Cameroon Green, and Jofra Archer, amongst others.


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Apis' new Ramadan campaign makes a case for health in times of worship

The campaign will commence on the first day of Ramadan, and continue until the celebration of Eid al-Fitr

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 12:35 PM   |   3 min read


Apis India, one of the leading FMCG brands in India, is launching a campaign during the holy month of Ramadan. The campaign, titled “Ibaadat Ke Iss Mahine Rakhein Sehat Ka Saath”, aims to promote individual well-being by blending the spiritual and personal aspects of Ramadan through Apis India's range of dates clubbed with other relevant products consumed in the month of Ramadan. Beyond just health, the campaign also celebrates the community bond that Ramadan brings together.

The strategy of the campaign will follow two routes, utilising both traditional media and online marketing. The campaign will commence on March 23, the first day of Ramadan, and continue until the celebration of Eid al-Fitr. In addition to leveraging traditional media, Apis India will also utilise social media platforms as an extension to the campaign, along with influencer marketing and targeted ads to reach a broader audience. Through this campaign, Apis India aims to make a lasting impact on individuals and communities across the country, promoting overall well-being during the holy month of Ramadan.

As part of its digital campaign for Ramadan, Apis is implementing a multifaceted strategy that includes a variety of initiatives. In addition to the ongoing social media campaign, the brand has planned a Pan-India contest and an influencer campaign on social media. These efforts are designed to engage with a wide audience and promote the brand's message of overall well-being during the holy month.

The contest invites participants to create unique recipes using Apis dates and other products for sehri and iftar promoting the diverse delicacies of the season through the brand.

As part of Apis India's “Ibaadat Ke Iss Mahine Rakhein Sehat Ka Saath" campaign, the brand's social media strategy includes an online contest that leverages the overarching narrative. The contest aims to bring the community together in an engaging activity to not only celebrate Ramadan, but also as a means to make the brand an active part of it. Through the contest, Apis India wants consumers to come along and share some of their unique recipes that make their Ramadan celebrations their own. During iftar a variety of delicious foods are prepared. Leveraging this aspect, Apis stands at the centre of this contest, with its Dates, Honey, vermicelli and kesar being made to be the building blocks of these unique recipes. 

Being a social media contest that engages the community, Apis India is also relying on other factors to reach out to a broader community. Through influencers from the Muslim community, the brand aims to spread awareness, while maximising the influencers by using them as a catalyst to boost the activity. The brand is also focusing on targeted ads during this holy month to amplify its online campaign.

To expand its reach beyond the digital sphere, the brand also includes hoardings, billboards, and banners to complement the social media campaign. In addition, the brand will organise an on-ground activity inspired by its video advertisement which conveyed the message of togetherness across religious lines and promoted the brand as an icon bringing people together.

The on-ground activity will see Apis visiting areas in the national capital with a significant Muslim population and distributing hampers containing Apis Dates and other products to the underprivileged during iftar. Through this initiative, Apis aims to increase consumer awareness about the significance of physical well-being during Ramadan and create a deeper bond within the community. By leveraging its campaign, Apis hopes to make a lasting impact on individuals and communities across the country.

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Explore the era of agility at Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai 2023

To be held tomorrow, 10 am onwards

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 9:06 AM   |   6 min read

pitch cmo

The exchange4media Group is back with the on-ground Mumbai edition of its flagship property - Pitch CMO Summit after three years. The upcoming edition of the conference will be held tomorrow, 24th of March, 2023 from 10 am. Fancode WebEngage and ABP News are the Co-Powered by Partners for the summit while the Co-Gold Partners are DoubleVerify, Pepper Content & Torc ai. 

Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai 2023 brings India's most reputed brands and top management to interact and share insights on their game-changing success stories under one roof.

The theme of this edition of the conference is ‘The Agile Marketer’.

Many esteemed speakers will be a part of the conference tomorrow at the Pitch CMO Summit Mumbai edition 2023. The keynote address at the conference will be delivered by a spokesperson representing a brand with the iconic tagline - The Complete Man. Representing the lifestyle division of the group - Sunil Kataria, CEO - Lifestyle Division, Raymond Group will speak at the conference on The Story of ‘The Complete Man’.

Another key speaker at the conference will represent a brand that disrupted the way how India buys and rents furniture. As their website says “Life can be a ‘bed of roses’ (if the bed is from Pepperfry)”, echoing the brand values Ambareesh Murty, Co-founder and CEO, Pepperfry will share insights in a fireside chat with Dr Annurag Batra, Chairman & Editor-in-Chief, BW Businessworld & exchange4media.

We live in an instant era - from our messages to our deliveries - we need everything to be faster than 5G. Why should our grocery delivery be slow? Our next speaker is the co-founder of an e-commerce brand that has disrupted the way India buys groceries.  Sharing with us this story of market disruption will be Aadit Palicha, Co-Founder & CEO, Zepto who will talk about Zepto: Revolutionizing The Way India Shops Groceries Online.

When our next Co-founding speaker was told that “Millet snacks can be healthy AND tasty? Impossible!”, she replied with “Challenge accepted.” and turned the love for Millets into a mission. Born out of the dream to reinvent millets, the brand today is a part of the Tata brands roster. Sharing more brands insights on the brand story at the summit will be Rasika Prashant, Co-founder & CMO, Tata Soulfull and speak on Tata Soulfull: Reviving Goodness With Taste, Health & Agility.

The summit will witness a mix of impactful stories of new-age brands and also the giants in their respective categories. Our next speaker will be representing an FMCG giant - Britannia Industries- which is one of India's leading food companies with a 100-year legacy and annual revenues in excess of Rs. 9000 Cr. Amit Doshi, CMO, Britannia Industries will be sharing cognizance on ‘Insightful Storytelling With Agile Marketing’.

Our next speaker comes from a brand that claims of leading the future of snacking with iconic global and local brands. Being a brand that most Indians remember and cherish, and one that has delivered iconic brand communication for its sub-brands over time, Mondelez empowers people to snack right in over 150 countries around the world. At the summit, Nitin Saini, VP - Marketing, Mondelez India will be speaking about ‘How Mondelez India Marries Ideas & Technology For Brand Building?’

The next brand making its presence felt at the summit is another FMCG biggie. Loreal, for more than 110 years, has devoted energy and competencies solely to one business: beauty. Their mission has been to offer all women and men on the planet the best of beauty in terms of quality, efficacy, safety and responsibility. Gaurav Anand, Chief Digital & Marketing Officer, L’Oréal India will speak about ‘The Future of Marketing with Consumer Data.’

In today’s world led by the likes of ChatGPT and Google Bard, brands that are shying away from using AI for advertising are at a continuous competitive disadvantage. To take us through the enormous opportunities that can emerge by marrying Human creativity and AI, Pawan Rochwani, Head of Brand & Partnerships, Pepper Content will speak about ‘Content ROI With & Beyond Generative AI’.

AI has revolutionized the advertising industry by enabling marketers to deliver personalized, targeted, and relevant ads to consumers. AI-powered advertising solutions use machine learning algorithms to analyze vast amounts of data on consumer behaviour, preferences, and demographics to predict and target ads to the right audience at the right time and place. To share some case studies of ‘Many Industry Firsts With VI Ads’, Rohit Verma, Chief Executive Officer, TorcAI will speak at the summit.

Conversational commerce is transforming the way consumers interact with businesses, allowing them to shop, order, and pay for products and services through messaging and chatbot technologies. No more clunky websites, no more frustrating phone calls - just natural language conversations with brands they love. Sharing more on ‘End of Broadcasting, Beginning of Conversations’ will be Tamanna Dhamija, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Convosight.

Gone are the days of Mad Men-style marketing, where creative ideas were enough to win over customers. Today, marketing is as much about technology as it is about creativity. The rise of MarTech (Marketing Technology) has given birth to a new generation of marketers who are just as comfortable with code as they are with the copy.  To share more insights on ‘Rise of the MarTech EXPLORERS & Insights From the State of MarTech In India’ joining the summit will be Mihir Karkare, EVP, Mirum India.

In today's highly competitive business world, understanding your customers has never been more critical. In fact, the success of your business largely depends on your ability to decode profitable customers and meet their needs effectively. This is where consumer intelligence comes into play. Let us welcome on stage Mr Vivek Bhargava, Co-Founder, Profitwheel to share more details on ‘Decoding Your Profitable Customers With Consumer Intelligence’

Another fireside chat will witness Deepak Saluja, Head of Marketing, ICICI Securities in conversation with Keyur Dhami, VP - Consumer Success, WebEngage to discuss How Futuristic CMOs are Building the Right Martech Stack and how the handshake between technology and marketing for legacy businesses has been getting stronger with Marketing Leaders becoming more and more tech-savvy.

The conference will be followed by the award felicitation ceremony of The Pitch Best CMO Awards 2023.


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