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Neo@Ogilvy enters into JV with Smile Group, appoints Sanjay Ramakrishnan as country head

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MUMBAI:Ogilvy India has announced a joint venture between Neo@Ogilvy and Smile Group. The move will strengthen the agency’s performance marketing, e-commerce and mobile offerings. The JV will also set up a global media delivery hub to service Neo@Ogilvy’s global media operations.

Not only this, Neo@Ogilvy India has also announced the appointment of Sanjay Ramakrishnan as country head.

Talking on the JV, Ogilvy South Asia chairman and creative director Piyush Pandey said, “This JV is one more step ahead in our digital journey. Harish’s experience in Digital Media and eCommerce will help drive rapid growth in these areas. And Sanjay Ramakrishnan is a fantastic young business leader with the right skills to lead Neo@Ogilvy in India.”

Elaborating on the vision of the partnership Smile Group chairman Harish Bahl said, “The JV will help offer world class services to local and global clients of Ogilvy and Neo respectively, using the expertise and experience of Smile in the areas of performance marketing, e-commerce and mobile.” Adding he said, “Sanjay, who will be the country head of Neo@Ogilvy India, brings on board a good blend of e-retail and performance marketing expertise both in internet & mobile and is best positioned to build a leadership position for Neo India around this business focus, which we believe are the future high growth areas for digital agencies.”

Ramakrishnan has over 15 years experience across digital media, e-commerce, mobile, telecom and consumer technology. He moves in from Vizury where he was the GM for India, S.E. Asia and MENA; prior to this, he was SVP marketing at Myntra. He has also held senior marketing roles at Google, Intel, Geodesic and Worldspace.

The aim is to recast Neo@Ogilvy as one of the most effective digital media companies in the country says Ramakrishnan

OgilvyOne India president and country head Vikram Menon said, “We're really excited with the JV with Smile Group. Strategically this fits perfectly into our plans to offer the best capability across digital to our clients. The Neo-Smile JV, with Sanjay at its helm, will do just that. He will ensure that Ogilvy is able to deliver the best across digital media, performance marketing, e-commerce and mobile.”

While OgilvyOne drives all digital strategy and creative services for clients in India, Neo@Ogilvy’s specific focus is on digital media, performance marketing, e-commerce and mobile marketing. Neo@Ogilvy’s client roster in India includes IBM, Diageo, British Airways, The Economist and The Which Group, among others.

On his appointment, Ramakrishnan said, “I am excited to be part of Ogilvy and drive this JV with the Smile Group. The aim is to recast Neo@Ogilvy as one of the most effective digital media companies in the country with a clear focus on performance marketing, mobile and e-commerce. I have been a marketer all my life and I believe there is a gap in the way paid digital media is intergrated with traditional marketing and communication.The goal is to change that through Neo@Ogilvy. End-to-end e-commerce solution is another unique offering that this JV brings to the table and I’m keen to use the skills I have to drive it.”

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