Carat India CEO Meenakshi Madhvani to bid adieu to her charge

MUMBAI: Meenakshi Madhvani, designated CEO, Carat Media Services India, is moving on. There is no information on Madhvani's future moves but sources claim that she is heading abroad. Unconfirmed reports at the time of writing are that she may be even higher up in the Carat Media hierarchy.

Indian media independent Carat is believed to have a turnover of Rs 3 billion and its sister agency Carat Integra (a joint venture which handles the business of Percept Advertising) has a turnover of Rs 1.5 billion.

Carat Asia Pacific CEO David Liu briefed the Carat India team about this new development today. Sulina Menon, who is currently heading the Delhi office, has been appointed as CEO with immediate effect. Pratibha (Pat) Vinayak and Gita Ram have been promoted as general managers in charge of the Mumbai office. Recently, Shripad Kulkarni who owns M:Ideas was appointed as CEO of Carat Integra.

Madhvani was appointed head of Carat when it started operations in India in 1997. She assumed charge of Carat at a time when the concept of media specialist agencies was very new in India. Very few ad agencies, leave alone advertisers, had an understanding of the functioning of a media specialist major.

The fiesty Madhvani, however, took this environment as a challenge. She nurtured the startup, Carat, gradually creating awareness and educating the media and advertising community on outsourcing media planning and selling to and independent agency. She not only ensured that the agency managed to stay afloat but that it also grew at a scorching pace.

Her varied experience stood her in good stead. Initially, with Lintas as part of the account management team on Hindustan Lever Limited - one of the savviest users of media. She later hopped on to the media side at Zee Telefilms. There she headed the fledgling but rapidly growing network's ad sales.

In 1999, Madhvani was elevated to Carat's Asia Pacific Executive committee, an exclusive 12-member team which is responsible for steering the agency.

In India, Carat handles clients such as Cadburys, Asian Paints amongst others. Carat Asia Pacific is amongst the top ten largest media specialist network in Asia Pacific.

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