Hires & Promotions: Innoviti, Upstox, Viacom18, Kalyan Jewellers, McCann

Quick look at new hirings, promotions and people movements this week

Prasad Sonavane Joins Innoviti As Chief Revenue Officer 

Innoviti, a leading provider of smart payment solutions announced a top-deck appointment of Prasad Sonavane as Chief Revenue Officer – Partner Ecosystem Development. An alumnus of Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Sonavane comes with 25 years’ experience as an accomplished Sales, Marketing, Partnerships & Alliances business leader in a variety of businesses including payment networks, information sales, FMCG.

In his last assignment, he was heading the Risk Management Solutions & Data Monetization verticals at Dun & Bradstreet. Prior to that, Sonavane was associated with American Express where he held various leadership roles in merchant acquiring, strategic alliances, consumer card issuing, and corporate card lending businesses. Prior to that he has worked with other leading brands like Asian Paints, Titan & Lintas. Sonavane will be heading Innoviti’s Partner Ecosystem wherein he will drive the company’s growth and profitability by forging partnerships and alliances to help our enterprise and retail businesses scale up and strengthen our market position while creating value for our bank and brand partners.

Bringing onboard senior talent like Sonavane reaffirms Innoviti's focus on strengthening and rapidly scaling up its partnerships with banks and category-specific brands that would help us with exponential business growth. Innoviti uses payment technology in unconventional ways to turn payment transactions into customer acquisition and retention tools for merchants, bank, and brands, by bringing them on to a common platform, and helping them deliver unique customer experiences, such as this one. Each business gets access to 3X loyal consumers at 1/3rd the cost, accelerating sales with unmatched efficiencies.

“Partnerships & Alliances will play a pivotal role in implementing our growth strategy and we are delighted to have Prasad onboard to own this mandate. Prasad’s expertise and vast knowledge will help enhance the value for all our bank and brand partners. His deep experience in building and nurturing partnerships will be an asset that blends well with Innoviti’s vision using technology to help merchants large and small get an equal opportunity to fuel their growth.” – said Amrita Malik, Co-Founder & Chief Business Officer – New Business Initiatives, Innoviti.

“It is an honor and a matter of pride to be joining the leadership team of Innoviti. The company leads the way in using technology to set new benchmarks for how retail businesses can seamlessly and cost effectively leverage their payment acceptance processing infrastructure into genuine drivers of business growth. I am thrilled to be joining the company at its inflection point of growth and transformation and I am committed to building and delivering on our vision.” – said Prasad Sonavane, Chief Revenue Officer, Partner Ecosystem Development, Innoviti.

Kunal Bhardwaj Joins Upstox As Senior Marketing Director

Kunaal Bhardwaj who was the Head of Marketing at ByteDance India has joined Upstox as Senior Marketing Director. His LinkedIn profile has been updated as confirmation for the same. 

Bhardwaj has been at the helm of the IPL ad films done by Upstox recently. He was a part of the global marketing team at ByteDance. Prior to this, Bhardwaj was Chief Marketing Officer at Hashtag Poker.

He has also been associated with other media organisations like ABP News Network, Dainik Bhaskar Group and Havas Media Group.

Viacom18 Names Vivek Mohan Sharma As Head Of Branded Content

Viacom18 has appointed Vivek Mohan Sharma as Head of Branded Content, Viacom18. Sharma will be reporting to Mahesh Shetty, Head – Network Sales, Viacom18. 

In his new role, Sharma will be responsible for leading branded content and solutions at the network level. Individually, he will be responsible for driving branded solutions for Viacom18’s Hindi Mass Entertainment, Regional Entertainment and Kids TV clusters leveraging its broadcast and social reach. In addition to this, he will also work with existing teams at Youth, Music and English Entertainment as well as the network’s digital play VOOT to bring in synergies and dial-up advertiser-funded content-driven growth.

Welcoming Sharma to the team, Mahesh Shetty, Head- Network Sales, Viacom18, said, “We are living in a world full of too many choices which however have increasingly minimal differentiation amongst them. Branded content has the potential to bring forth this differentiation and connect with audiences in a more engaging and emotional capacity. With his versatile experience in leadership roles across industries, Vivek is best poised to bring collaborations across our brand offerings and create unique propositions for our clients that are relevant and result-oriented.” 

On his new role as Head of Branded Content at Viacom18, Vivek Mohan Sharma said, “Brands today are looking at creating moments and mindshare that stays with the audience for long. Branded content acts as the bridge, bringing in solutions that truly connect the brand with its consumers in an engaging and effective manner. I look forward to drive value, innovation and overall growth in my new role at Viacom18.”

An industry leader with close to two decades of experience in Business Management, Revenue and Marketing panning across Media, Telecom and Banking sectors, Vivek, with his deep industry insights has led leadership roles at Mirchi, Idea Cellular, Deutsche Bank and ICICI Bank in the past. 

Prior to joining Viacom18, Vivek worked as Head- Digital Business and worked towards transforming Mirchi to a dominant digital content and solutions brand. A graduate from Delhi University, Vivek has completed his post-graduation in management from T.A. Pai Management Institute, Manipal.

Sharma's appointment is with immediate effect. 

Kalyan Jewellers Elevates Punith Iyer As COO Of Candere

Punith Iyer, who formerly held the position of Company GM of Candere by Kalyan Jewellers, has been promoted to the post of Chief Operating Officer.

With over 15 years of experience under his belt, Punith has extensively worked with large enterprises such as Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan Chase, Essar, and GE to name a few.

In 2019, he was appointed Company GM of Candere where he was responsible for Finance, Operations, Alliances, Marketplace, and Customer Delight. His new role as COO will see him shouldering the responsibility for the company's future strategic goals, performance, and growth. 

In accepting the position, Iyer said, "Candere is committed to providing uncompromising quality and craftsmanship to the masses. The company has been a path-breaker in creating an online showroom with customizations available to its patrons, and continually endeavours to create not just high-quality products, but best-in-class experiences for their clients. I am honoured to be entrusted with the role of COO and to join the ranks of these industry innovators." 

Sharing an insight behind the new appointment, Rupesh Jain, Founder and CEO, Candere remarked, “With each milestone, we at Candere get closer to our goal of making fine jewellery more accessible to all, while offering extraordinary value to our customers. We are excited to welcome Punith into our leadership team and are confident in his ability to streamline, ideate, and lead Candere into the future."

McCann hires Swapnil Jain as CFO

McCann Worldgroup India has appointed Swapnil Jain as Chief Financial Officer from 1st June 2021.

Swapnil joins MWG India from Suzlon Energy Limited where he was the CFO. He will be based in Mumbai.

Speaking on the appointment, Prasoon Joshi, Chairman, McCann Asia Pacific and CEO McCann Worldgroup India, said, “I am delighted to have Swapnil join the Company. He is a Finance veteran with an extraordinary reputation and rich experience. Today our industry is expanding, and our requirements and client’s expectations are broader. Swapnil comes with vast experience in other industries and is a keen learner and am positive he will add a very distinct dimension to our offering. Looking forward to him further strengthening our enviable McCann India team.” 

Swapnil is a Senior Management Executive having work experience of over 26 years and holding leadership positions with large organizations. He brings with him a deep understanding of critical business drivers in multiple industries and track record of delivering on stakeholder commitments. He also has extensive fund-raising experience in the infrastructure industries. 

Swapnil holds an MBA from Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies. Post a brief but remarkable stint at Lloyds Finance, Jain joined the Essar Group and rose to the position of Group CFO for Essar Group’s Power business. He also led Essar Power Gujarat Limited as the CEO for about a year prior to moving to Suzlon Energy Limited.

On his joining McCann, Swapnil said “I am absolutely thrilled to be part of McCann’s highly respected leadership. McCann is the most respected, awarded and recognized creative communication agency in India and look forward to support the company and its growth through meaningful contribution.”