's Media, Advertising, Marketing Watch
Sonal Dabral joins Bates David Enterprise India as chairman Team

(26 July 2007 3:30 pm)


MUMBAI: BatesAsia has roped in Sonal Dabral in a dual capacity as regional executive creative director, Asia Pacific, and Bates David Enterprise, India chairman, with effect from October 2007. He will be replacing current chairman Mohammad Khan who is retiring.

Dabral will work closely with India CEO Subhash Kamath. "In India, over the past 18 months, we have grown enormously through M&A. We are now a strong top 10 agency with over 450 people across all centres. The next big step was to raise the bar on our creative product. And frankly, it cannot get any bigger than this! Sonal, in my opinion, is one of the hottest creative people in the region, and I am absolutely thrilled to be working with him!" Kamath said.

"Sonal's appointment signals BatesAsia's commitment to elevate the creative prowess of our network and to produce the best, change-building work for our clients," said, BatesAsia president Jeffrey Yu.

Khan said, "This has been in the offing for some time and is part of a carefully planned strategy. I am absolutely delighted to welcome Sonal and to know that Bates has a fabulous future in India under his creative leadership."

In his 15-year career, Dabral has won awards from international and regional shows, including Cannes, Clio, D&AD, One Show, AdFest and Spikes.

Most recently at Cannes, as chairman and ECD, he led Ogilvy & Mather (Advertising) Singapore ("Ogilvy") to be the third highest awarded agency in the world, competing against a record 25,700 entries from more than 80 countries. Ogilvy Singapore emerged second runner up as global "Agency of the Year", a first for an Asian agency. Under his leadership, Ogilvy Singapore has been named the number one creative agency for five consecutive years (according to Campaign Brief Asia).

Prior to BatesAsia, Dabral worked with Ogilvy for ten years with Ogilvy Asia Pacific co-chairman Tham Khai Meng. He spent his early years in advertising at Lintas, Delhi moving on to Ogilvy India in Mumbai, where he worked with then CD, Piyush Pandey. He was then offered the post of ECD at Ogilvy Malaysia in 1999. In May 2004, Dabral took over as chairman and ECD of Ogilvy Singapore, states an official release.

Said Tham Khai Meng, "In his three-year tenure, Sonal has lifted our Singapore office to new heights. Among Ogilvy Singapore's many accolades, they came in second runner-up in the global 'Agency of the Year' awards at Cannes this year - a remarkable first for an Asia Pacific agency. Sonal will now step up to a larger role, taking with him that same firebrand of world-class talent and rare people's skills. I have every confidence Sonal will bring to BatesAsia that same creative brilliance and leadership he brought to Ogilvy Singapore. It's a very exciting time for BatesAsia!"

Said Dabral, "I am excited about working for such an ambitious network as BatesAsia and look forward to taking up the challenges of a pan-Asia role."

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