Rupert Murdoch lauds Modi; US CEOs call for speedy TV digitisation

MUMBAI: There are some leaders who leave a good impression and then there are those who leave a lasting impression on others’ mind, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi definitely belongs to the latter type. 


In his recent meeting with the Fortune 500 CEOs at the iconic Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York, Modi not only successfully brought up the burning issues of Indian media and digitisation to the world platform, but also instilled a sense of camaraderie amongst the executives, whose net worth, as per the media buzz, was $4.5 trillion!


The proof of the pudding lay in the superlative address that 21st Century Fox chairman Rupert Murdoch gave Modi through his tweet after the event.


“Great hour with Indian PM Modi. Best leader with best policies since independence, but massive task to achieve in most complex nation,” said Murdoch.


Apart from the senior Murdoch, the CEOs present at the roundtable meeting chaired by Modi included 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch, News Corp  CEO Robert Thompson, Star India CEO Uday Shankar, WPP CEO Martin Sorrell, Discovery Communications president and CEO David Zaslav, Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton, Interpublic Group of Companies CEO Michael Roth, Vice Media CEO Shane Smith, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes, A&E Networks CEO Nancy Dubuc, Visy Industries chairman Anthony Pratt, Route One Investment Company’s William Duhamel and ValueAct Capital CEO Jeff Ubben.

While the CEOs were enthusiastic about the digital transformation that is taking place in India through the Digital India initiative, they called for speeding up of television digitisation, and strengthening of the cellular (mobile) infrastructure.


According to the head honchos, the current strong trajectory of the Indian economy made it at a unique moment to accelerate growth in this sector.


Post the meeting, Modi tweeted his pleasure in seeing the executives enthusiastic about being part of Digital India and the role of media in it. “Met top American CEOs from media & entertainment sector. They were enthusiastic about the change @_DigitalIndia initiative in driving,” he said before craftily leading in the major issues that were discussed among the executives in the congregation earlier.


“My interaction with Fortune 500 CEOs was on investment opportunities in India & why they must come & @makeinindia! Digital technology has a vital role in making democracy stronger & in overall human resource development,” he tweeted.


Modi painted the government's vision to connect the 600,000-odd villages in India with broadband and emphasised that digital technology will increasingly play a major role in further strengthening democracy and India's development narrative. He also highlighted how Digital India posed as a great opportunity for the international media companies.


As evident from the PM’s tweets, foreign direct investment (FDI) formed a large chunk of the round table and the 90 minute soiree. “Foreign direct investment all over the world has fallen. But in India, it increased by 40 per cent. This reflects confidence in the Indian economy,” Modi was heard pointing out the executives right before they sat down for dinner. “Reform in governance is my number one priority. We are for simplified procedures, speedy decision-making, transparency and accountability,” he assured the prospective investors.


The topic that dominated most of the evening was the role that the media and entertainment industry can play in development and generation of employment opportunities in India.


Modi also touched upon the importance of a smoother Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) regime in the digital era.


Pegging his argument on India’s value for intellectual property he said, “We are committed to protecting IPR, that's essential to fostering creativity.”


He also upheld the importance of regional languages in India and suggested to the CEOs that India represents both the biggest opportunity and the biggest challenge for them. He also urged them to keep regional languages in mind, as they firm up investment plans for India. “Explained to media CEOs why India is a great opportunity for them & how many regional languages makes India even more special to invest in,” Modi tweeted.


“The government has already undertaken a massive amount of reforms. Key message from the US companies was keep doing what you are doing. I had a great meeting, there was a constructive dialogue in the spirit of collaboration. We are looking at India trying to get foreign direct investment,” said J P Morgan CEO James Dimon.


As per  India's foreign office spokesperson Vikas Swarup, Modi took keen interest to personally interact with every CEO, and understand the executives’ areas of concern that his government could address and resolve.


The Prime Minister emphasised that he saw a key role for digital technology in further strengthening democracy, and in India’s development narrative.


“By and large the mood was upbeat. There was a general consensus that the Prime Minister was effecting change in India. The only thing which these chief executives said was: Please make these changes faster,” Swarup briefed the media.

Latest Reads
PBL: Setting stage for next big thing on Indian sporting landscape

India has witnessed the emergence of a multi-sports culture over the past few years. This significant development has come on the back of a promising display by Indian sportspersons across various disciplines, the meteoric rise of home grown leagues and the consequent widening of the fan base of...

Television TV Channels Sports
CNNMoney new section will be about the fastest growing economy; MoneyStream app launched

MUMBAI: Attracting 1.8 million average monthly page views, witnessing a 37 per cent growth in video consumption and 16 per cent in unique browsers month-on-month from India in less than a year’s time is not smooth. In its ambitious plan of global expansion, CNN Digital is leaving no stone unturned...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Content a 'Game of Thrones'; AT&T's control over HBO, Cartoon Network, Warner Bros faces regulatory lens

The global media landscape is resulting in a new juggernaut as an internet and cable behemoth yesterday purchased an entertainment conglomerate making the former unmatched in its size and reach to consumers through home broadband, smartphones, satellite television and a battery of movies and cable...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
US$ 4.5 bn expected from IPL rights; SC recommends accounts scrutiny

The Supreme Court on Friday froze all financial transactions between the BCCI and state cricket associations by directing the apex body not to disburse any funds till it resolves to abide by the Justice RM Lodha panel recommendations on reforms by 3 December . The top court ordered that none of...

Television TV Channels Sports
TVS Tyres is co-presenter for Asian Champions Trophy 2016

Continuing its strong connect with sports, TVS Tyres has associated with Asian Champions Trophy 2016 by becoming the co-presenter. The Asian Champions Trophy is one of the premier hockey tournaments, a much sought after annual international competition promising some great hockey action. This...

Television TV Channels Sports
Q2-17: Zee Learn declares maiden interim dividend

The board of directors of the Essel group’s education company Zee Learn Limited (ZLL) have declared a first time ever dividend of 5 percent per equity share of Re 1 each for the quarter ended 30 September 2016 (Q2-17, current quarter).

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Whether BARC action can stop unethical practices?

MUMBAI: Can businesses and industries practise their art of selling fairly although they have 'Fair Practices' training during academic courses, workshops and several ISO and other certifications? There seems to be the fear of the lawman, and not the law in India. If the traffic cop is watching,...

Television TV Channels Viewership
TV Superhighway: beIN, Yaddo, AfricaXP have joined us, says Magine CEO Ambuj Goyal

CANNES; Magine has secured partnerships with four of the industry’s most exciting sports, documentary and entertainment content providers. Partnerships with beIN, the international media group and owner of MIRAMAX; Yaddo, the new documentary streaming service headed up by former head of The BBC’s...

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Colors emerges strong on strength of Naagin I & II

MUMBAI: One of the top rated shows Naagin Season 2 helped Colors reach a top-ranking position.

Television TV Channels GECs

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories