Hires & Promotions: Xaxis, LocoNav, Cosmo Films, WebEngage, Dentsu, Toshiba

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

Xaxis Elevates Dimpy Yadav To General Manager, India

Xaxis, GroupM’s Outcome Media Specialist has elevated Dimpy Yadav to the role of General Manager, Xaxis India. 

In this new role, Yadav will be responsible for leading Xaxis and its clients through India’s rapidly growing digital media landscape, which includes an online retail market that is expected to triple its volume over the next five years. 

To accomplish this, she will focus on three main areas of strategic development: Integration, Intelligence, and Innovation. This will include the continued development of advanced, omnichannel digital media solutions optimized with data and artificial intelligence technology to help brands earn valuable business outcomes. 

Dimpy Yadav, General Manager, Xaxis India says, “I’m ecstatic to take over this role of spearheading Xaxis India. In line with global trends, we are dedicated to driving cutting-edge omnichannel solutions powered by seamless integration of data-driven creative solutions that will help brands extract the maximum value from their media investments. I’d like to thank Xaxis for having the faith in me and I look forward to helping our clients address the growing complexity of the media landscape and earn real business outcomes.” 

Atique Kazi, President - Data, Performance and Digital Products, GroupM India said, “Dimpy has a first-rate knowledge of data, integration, and new age media. She has been leading client engagement for Xaxis India proficiently and has driven impactful solutions for our clients. She has always stayed ahead of the curve with her expertise and continuous innovation in client solutions. We are confident that she will play a pivotal role as the lead for Xaxis India.”

Dimpy’s journey with Xaxis began in 2017 as an Engagement Manager and evolved through several roles; her most recent position was National Head for Client Engagement. She will be based of Gurugram and will report to Atique Kazi.

LocoNav Appoints Seema Chawla As Its New CMO

Seema Chawla has been named Chief Marketing Officer of LocoNav, starting August 2021. Seema, a former VP and Head of Marketing at Hike and VP Marketing at Hotstar International, has more than two decades of expertise growing global businesses via effective marketing and brand development. LocoNav will be able to integrate fleet-tech into mainstream discourse thanks to her experience developing global and local consumer brands like as AJIO, Hike, Hotstar, and Disney, as well as a solid knowledge of B2C consumer marketing concepts.

At Loconav, Seema wants to increase customer involvement in the B2B IT segment. She will contribute to the company's goal-oriented marketing and communication strategy.

Seema will be in charge of all marketing at LocoNav in her new position. Building a diverse team with worldwide responsibility will be one of her first tasks. This team will strive to improve the brand's experience at every touchpoint of the fleet owner and driver's consumer journey through simpler and personalised marketing. The ultimate aim is to enable them to learn about the entire suite of LocoNav fleet management solutions that will improve their company's safety and profitability.

Shridhar Gupta and Vidit Jain, Co-Founders - LocoNav, said, “With Seema joining us, we are now at an exciting new juncture in our growth journey. At LocoNav, she will be at the helm of building consumer-insight-driven market-specific strategies as we expand into high-growth international markets. Seema truly understands the importance of consumer experience in driving trust and credibility. We are confident that her strategic approach to marketing will help us establish LocoNav as the most preferred fleet-tech brand across the globe.”

On her appointment, Seema Chawla, Chief Marketing Officer, LocoNav, said, “At LocoNav, we innovate for the fleets that move our world. We want to create a sustainable positive impact for every stakeholder in the fleet ecosystem. This is what excites me the most about the company, the founders, and their vision. The bulk of the world’s commercial vehicles reside in high-growth and emerging markets and yet the adoption of the category is slow. This is because the end customer perceives using fleet technology as an additional cost rather than a driver of business growth. Current communication and marketing efforts are conventional, technical jargon-heavy, and don't take the nuancing of these end consumers into account. These large and mid-size fleet owners and drivers come from varying educational backgrounds, often with limited understanding of the jargon, or speak local languages, different from the ones that the industry typically communicates in. With the right purpose-driven marketing, we want to empower every customer to access fleet management solutions and truly unlock its potential of safety and business profitability. My mission at LocoNav is to help build a disruptive, democratized, and accessible fleet-tech brand that millions of fleet owners and drivers across the globe trust and advocate for as their own.”

Seema had previously served as the VP and Head of Marketing at Hike, a company that is pioneering a new social future. She has also worked for The Walt Disney Company India in numerous strategic brand, marketing, and sales responsibilities.

Cosmo Films Promotes Pankaj Poddar As CEO

Pankaj Poddar has been elevated to Group CEO of Cosmo Films, where he will oversee the recently established and rapidly growing consumer company ZIGLY, as well as trade verticals such as Films, Labeling & Packaging, Specialty Chemicals, Ferrites, Masterbatches, and Textile Chemicals. The change took effect immediately, and it was made in appreciation of the company's rapid success under Poddar's leadership as CEO.

Pankaj Poddar has held significant leadership positions in the firm across business divisions and verticals throughout the course of his 26-year career. Pankaj was the Chief Financial Officer of Cosmo Films Ltd. in 2011 and was in charge of the company's financial operations both in India and abroad.

Pankaj began his career with a seven-year tenure at Ernst and Young before moving on to top financial positions at Reckitt Benckiser, Delphi Automotive, and Avon Beauty. He is a frequent speaker at packaging industry events and is on the boards of the Organization of Plastic Processors of India, Plast India, and the International Federation of Packaging Associations.

Speaking of the appointment, Ashok Jaipuria, Chairman & Managing Director, Cosmo Films, said, “Pankaj's contribution is immense for the success of Cosmo as is visible in the last few years.  R&D, Sales & Marketing competencies, expanded product range and focus on Speciality films have led to the achievement of record EBITDA and an all-time high market capitalization. Pankaj has also played a key role in ensuring diversification from the Films business into Ferrites, Speciality Chemicals and Zigly.  All of these will make a significant addition to all the parameters of the company – topline, bottom line and market valuations. He is a great asset to Cosmo with his focus, drive and implementation bringing in benefits to the company and its stakeholders.” 

Commenting on his appointment, Pankaj Poddar said, “I am delighted to be elevated as the Group CEO. At this point of time, Cosmo Films Ltd. is at the pivotal state of its growth with diversification into different sectors. Being a global leader in the films and packaging sector, we aim to be the preferred brand for Specialty Chemicals, Ferrites, Polymers & Petcare.” 

WebEngage Appoints Ankur Gattani As Head Of Growth & Marketing 

WebEngage, a marketing automation and customer data platform has appointed Ankur Gattani as VP, Growth and Marketing. Ankur has over 13 years of experience including as a customer, mentor and advisor to WebEngage in his previous roles.

Ankur is an IITB/IIM Cal graduate who will be taking charge of the entire growth marketing function at Webengage to sharpen WebEngage’s positioning as a thought leader in retention marketing and a champion of building enduring businesses. Ankur’s stint at Foodpanda Global to drive CRM efforts led to the transformation of one message-per-country regimen to a 1:1 personalized messages on multiple channels across 45 Countries, 20+ timezones and Languages. The speed of roll-out earned his team accolades and a speaker invite from Salesforce to share the story at Dreamforce - a flagship event by Salesforce.

Ankur has dabbled in ideas in eCommerce and created a consumer FMCG brand as well, is a big believer in driving stories and analogies to help customers understand the brand proposition better. The ecosystem will need 100s of more retention professionals as founders mature to think beyond acquisition-driven growth and he’s gearing Webengage up to drive the entire education and community play forward.

“We are ecstatic to have Ankur on board with us at WebEngage. As a customer-first company, our primary focus has always been in investing towards the growth of our customers and building success for them in their journey. Ankur’s expertise in customer success and data-driven marketing efforts along with his valuable insights is crucial for the growth of the brand. We look forward to him playing a key role in WebEngage’s next phase of growth”, said Avlesh Singh, Co-founder & CEO, WebEngage.

“Our company’s vision is to drive and create strategic business value for WebEngage and its customers and enable them to have a successful journey with their users. I am glad to have this opportunity and join the team to accelerate the growth with marquee brands and build user engagement with successful campaigns,” says Ankur Gattani - VP Growth and Marketing - WebEngage.

Dentsu International Appoints Narayan Devanathan As CCO, India

Dentsu international has announced the creation of a new market leadership role of Chief Client Officer (CCO) and elevated Narayan Devanathan to this role for India. Most recently, Narayan was CEO, dentsu Solutions, President, Strategy & Integration, dentsu India, as well as APAC Lead for Strategy & Consulting, dentsu Creative.

While a CEO for dentsu India is being recruited, Narayan will report into Peter Huijboom, Global CEO Media and Global Clients and interim Co-CEO for India.

Narayan will be responsible for driving a renewed focus on client-centric solutions and will partner Amit Wadhwa (CEO – Creative Service Line), Divya Karani (CEO – Media Service Line) and Anubhav Sonthalia (CEO – CXM Service Line) to deliver the best of dentsu’s solutions across the spectrum of business challenges that clients face in an ever-changing world while making our business easier to navigate for our clients.

Speaking on the appointment, Peter Hujiboom said, “India is a key part of the global dentsu story, and Narayan, in turn, is a key member of the India leadership team. As we embark on the next leg of the dentsu India 2.0 journey, he will be focusing his energy, expertise and experience in helping bring together the capabilities of 3200+ dentsu talents seamlessly to make dentsu our clients’ partner of choice. With this appointment as Chief Client Officer for India, Narayan will be moving away from his other roles in India and APAC with immediate effect.”

Narayan Devanathan added, “Transformation is easier said than done, but like integration, it’s a process. What matters most are the outcomes. Through relentless customer-centricity, outcome-driving solutions and next practice consulting, our aim for dentsu India 2.0 is not just to transform ourselves but to transform our clients’ business – sustainably, for good. To this end, we will deploy the power of creativity, a consummate understanding of people and data, and keep our eye on the only prize that matters: meaningful progress for our clients, their customers, and society. To me, this is what my new role as Chief Client Officer means. And this will be my only focus.”

Shuichi Ito Appointed As Managing Director, Toshiba India 

Toshiba India (TIPL) has appointed Shuichi Ito as its new Managing Director. Ito will lead TIPL  to the path of the next level of growth across the group’s energy and social infrastructure businesses in the country. 

A law graduate from the Kyushu University of Japan, Ito comes with almost three decades of strong and diverse experience in Toshiba’s international energy business. Ito will succeed Tomohiko Okada who was at the helm of TIPL’s operations for more than five years. Welcoming Ito to his new role, Tomohiko Okada said, “During my association with India spanning over 30 years, I     witnessed India-Japan economic partnership and investments reach new heights.    Toshiba has been actively contributing to the Indian government’s initiatives,     particularly Make-in-India, Clean India, and Skill India. I believe Ito is the right    person to  further strengthen Toshiba’s support to    India    and    to    take    TIPL    into its new growth phase.”

On his appointment,  Ito stated, “Toshiba remains committed to provide the latest technologies and solutions for India to achieve sustainable development. I am honoured to take over this responsibility from  Okada and stand resolute in    Toshiba’s commitment to     India. I look forward to reinforcing our long-term    partnership with    customers and partners to support India in building world-class infrastructure and turn on the promise    of    a    new    day     for India.”

 Across his 30-years  tenure with Toshiba, Ito has held various leadership roles in international operations, business development, sales, and other commercial functions in the energy infrastructure business field across  Asia and    South    America. His first association with India dates back to the start of his career. In 1991,  as part of the South Asia Group of Overseas Energy Division, he closely worked on a thermal power project in the state of Uttar Pradesh and supplied power transmission and distribution products to a major power company in India. Later in 2016, he was appointed as the Director – Sales at Toshiba Transmission & Distribution Systems (India) where he worked on sales expansion in and outside India.

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