Sam Balsara - first amongst equals

Madison group of companies CMD Sam Balsara has over 25 years experience; eight in marketing with Sarabhais and Cadburys and rest in advertising with Contract (JWT), Mudra and Madison.

Balsara, born 1951, is a management graduate (from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute, Bombay) and has over 25 years experience in managerial positions in marketing with Sarabhai's & Cadbury's; and in advertising with Contract (a subsidiary of JWT/HTA), Mudra and Madison.

Balsara joined Mudra in 1984 when the agency's billing was under Rs 40 million and contributed to its meteoric rise over the next four years. He was also directly responsible for organising the Reliance Cup in India (Cricket World Cup) and marketing the cup in India and abroad.

Balsara founded Madison Advertising in 1988 with three blue chip accounts Godrej, Tata (Nelco) and Mafatlal and the agency has steadily gained in stature and billings and today its client list includes, Procter & Gamble, BPL and Coke with current media billings of Rs 5.5 billion. Madison features in the Economic Times listing as the fourth most admired agency in India.

Over the last few years Balsara has acquired a reputation in media having successfully handled the first AOR in the country for Procter & Gamble. Madison is now the AOR for P&G, Godrej, Coke, BPL, Kinetic, Perfetti, Maruti (for TV) ABN AMRO Bank and Playwin Lotteries with media offices in Bombay, Delhi and Bangalore.

In 1994, Balsara steered Madison's tie-up with DMB&B, the world's tenth largest agency with billings of US $ 6.3 billion and became chairman and managing director of Madison DMB&B. In May 1999, he terminated the arrangement with DMB&B because of differences in opinion.

He is also chairman of MOMS (Madison Outdoor Media Services) & Madison Merchandising and director of Anugrah Madison, the rural advertising unit of Madison. He also runs a public relations unit. He is a prominent member of the Indian marketing and advertising profession.

He is currently president of Advertising Agencies Association of India, head of NRSC Technical Committee and serves on the AAA-IBF joint Committee. He is also a past chairman of Advertising Standards Council of India and a founder member of ECO-India, an organisation to promote environment-friendly actions.

He has been president of The Advertising Club, Bombay (arguably the world's largest Advertising Club with 3000 members) for almost three terms and has been editor of Solus - the Ad Club's magazine for many years. He was chairman of Triple A Awards for many years.

He is a regular speaker at seminars and forums pertaining to advertising and has served on several professional committees and judging panels.

Prominent Industry figure:

Current Positions

President of Advertising Agencies Association of India

Head, NRSC technical committee

Member, IBF-AAAI joint committee

Member, executive committee of Audit Bureau of Circulation

Member, board of governors of Advertising Standards Council of India

Member, organising committee of ADASIA, 2003

Founder member of ECO-India

Previous Positions:

Immediate past chairman of The Advertising Standards Council of India -01

Vice-President of Advertising Agencies Association of India

Past chairman of Triple A Awards

Past president of the Advertising Club, Bombay (3 terms) (1989-92)

Editor of Solus - The Ad Club Magazine (1979-92).

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