Report on Shemaroo

Wondrlab will be an omnichannel strategist for clients: Saurabh Varma

Saurabh Varma talks about his new platform-first venture.

NEW DELHI: When Leo Burnett opened the doors to his new-found agency in the middle of the Great Depression, he started a ritual of welcoming all visitors by giving them apples. At that time, many had prophesied that it won’t be long before Burnett ends up selling apples instead of giving them away. Cut to 85-years later, Leo Burnett is one of the largest agencies in the world, and its global offices still keep apple baskets on their reception desks – a sweet reminder of where it all started. 

While this yarn has been told and retold several times, Saurabh Varma, an industry genius who spent several years working with Leo Burnett and eventually Publicis, derived inspiration from it. He also went one step further by launching his own venture, a platform-first agency – Wondrlab – amidst a global pandemic and impending economic slowdown. 

In an exclusive conversation with, Varma highlighted that though it is difficult to begin something in times like these, he wanted to challenge the things that he had earlier taken for granted. 

Started in partnership with his long-term colleagues and friends Vandana Verma and Rakesh Hinduja, Wondrlab is Varma’s ambitious project aiming to help clients win in the new marketing landscape. 

He explains, “Wondrlab is a model communications company that aims to provide disruptive services to its clients in experiential, content, and brand building strategies with a platform-first approach. We are planning to partner with platforms like Facebook, Google, YouTube, etc, to offer our clients solutions that suit their needs the best depending on which platform they are targeting. We are going to be the omnichannel strategists for them.” 

Wondrlab will invest in creating martech platforms to provide tools to enable hitherto complex expensive bespoke executions at the push of a button. All of Wondrlab’s solutions are backed by data and automation that leads to efficiency, measurability and ROI through user-friendly platform interfaces, centralised marketing controls, personalised content and automated solutions at scale.

Varma shares that Wondrlab is seeking some strategic alliances and acquisitions to achieve this. 

Apart from this, his short-term goals for Wondrlab are to invest in the right people and products, support the talent development of his teams, and create spectacular work for his clients. 

“For me, the right talent pool is the one that is always ready to evolve and learn. Since we are doing something that is industry-first, we want people who are quick learners and are capable of collaborating with various platforms to support our platform-first strategy,” he highlights. 

Currently, Wondrlab is a 70-people team with offices in Delhi and Mumbai, but Varma and team are on a hiring spree. For the mode of work, he is seeking to find a sense of balance between remote working and presence at the offices. 

“The whole concept of the office is a paradox now and we are looking forward to striking the right balance between the options. We will obviously be partnering with various firms and people depending on a project-to-project basis,” he shares.

For the long term, his vision is to scale up each of the capabilities that Wondrlab promises and create a unique proposition of platform-first services, technologies, and strategies for the clients. 

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