HT Group has made two major announcements. Rajesh Ramakrishnan has been appointed as the Head of Marketing, Hindustan Times and to start with, he will be responsible for the marketing of the Hindustan Times brand in the North and the East. Secondly, Salil Sadanandan who was serving as the business head - south and west, is moving out of the group and will be replaced by Pankaj Tibrewal.
Pankaj comes to HT Media from the Future Group where he was the COO and Business Head for Pantaloons. At Pantaloons, Pankaj established global best practices in retail and implemented a new customer-first strategy, and, under his leadership, Pantaloons achieved an annual growth of 30-35%. He has earlier held several strategic and operational roles within the group. Prior to the Future Group, he worked with McKinsey and Company in their Chicago office where he advised several Fortune 500 companies in diverse industries including airline, consumer products and industrial products on business issues ranging from operational transformation, organization structure, and growth strategy to mergers & acquisitions. Previous to this, he was an entrepreneur.
Speaking about Salil’s tenure, Rajiv Verma, Group CEO, HT Media Group, said, “Today, we stand tall on our achievements in Mumbai thus far, and feel confident that we are now in a position to go for a clear win with our consumers and customers. And, such successes don't happen by chance, they happen by stewardship. If there's one name that's synonymous with our Mumbai success, it is Salil Sadanandan.It's never easy to let go of such passionate leaders but it's only fair that a leader who has contributed so much to our enterprise must be enabled with this opportunity. Please join me in wishing Salil great success in his new endeavour.”
Salil joined HT Media in May 2008, at a time when the challenge in Mumbai seemed larger than the initial anticipation and the window of opportunity appeared to be shrinking. It required thought leadership, product leadership and leadership in execution through conviction, resolve and great team-work. Salil led each one of these from the front and achieved in these four years those critical milestones from where Hindustan Times can now get into an even higher trajectory. Today, the Mumbai edition, in a highly competitive market, is a strong and clear No. 2 in readership as well as in advertising volumes. It has had consistently high readership and revenue growths in the past 3 years and is financially close to breaking even. Amongst many others, two extremely impactful innovation initiatives that he spearheaded and which became the talk of the town were the "No TV day" and "Mission Fitter Mumbai". Salil demonstrated strong functional leadership in the region as well as on the edition - and today, both are poised to hit the next level.
Commenting on Rajesh Ramakrishnan joining, Shantanu Bhanja, VP Marketing - HT Media, said, "Rajesh combines a strong sense of result-orientation with an ability to bring the best out of people. He will bring exceptional Marketing depth to our biggest Brand and key markets"
Rajesh Ramakrishnan is an alumnus of BITS Pilani and XLRI Jamshedpur, and has over 17 years of experience in Sales and Marketing across companies like Reckitt Benckiser, Marico and Pepsico. He has worked on a diverse set of brands including Cherry Blossom, Kurkure and Quaker. During his tenure, initiatives that he drove won the Pepsico Global Awards for best "Insights to Innovation" in both 2006 and 2010. His last assignment was Head, Global Marketing with Apollo Tyres.
Rajesh will report to Shantanu Bhanja, and consequent to this, Diptakirti Chaudhuri, Marketing Head, HT Delhi, and the North and East Marketing teams will report to Rajesh.
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