Hires & Promotions: Reckitt, Leo Burnett, Dentsu

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

Leo Burnett Orchard Makes Leadership Changes

Leo Burnett Orchard, part of Leo Burnett India has promoted Gaurav Dudeja as Executive Vice President & Head of Leo Burnett Orchard and welcomes onboard Pravin Sutar as Head of Creative, Leo Burnett Orchard. Together they will lead the national mandate for Leo Burnett Orchard and will report to Dheeraj Sinha, CEO & Chief Strategy Officer – South Asia Leo Burnett and Rajdeepak Das, CEO & Chief Creative Officer – South Asia Leo Burnett. 

Gaurav moved to Bangalore two years ago from Leo Burnett Delhi as Branch Head for Leo Burnett Orchard - Bangalore. He has been instrumental in strengthening the Leo Burnett Orchard brand offerings by managing the large portfolio of businesses and winning a number of new businesses. 

Pravin Sutar joins as Head of Creative, Leo Burnett Orchard, this is his second stint with Leo Burnett. He will be responsible to shape the creative culture of the agency building it on the tenets of creativity, technology, innovation and storytelling.  

Speaking about these appointments Dheeraj Sinha, CEO & Chief Strategy Officer – South Asia, Leo Burnett said “Our ambition for Leo Burnett Orchard is to be the foremost creative and new age agency in the country. With the set of amazing brands that we have, topped with the talent we have got on board, Leo Burnett Orchard is correctly poised for glory and growth. Gaurav has done a spectacular job of driving growth in Bangalore office. Now he has the mandate to grow the agency at a national level. Pravin joins us with a rich expertise  in digital and also holds the advantage of having been a part of the Leo Burnett family. And together we are confident that the duo will take Leo Burnett Orchard to one of India’s foremost new age agencies. 

Adding further Rajdeepak Das, CEO & Chief Creative Officer – South Asia, Leo Burnett added, “Both Gaurav and Pravin are brilliant professionals and bring a complementary skill set that we are confident will help bring a more holistic and fresh perspective to the Leo Burnett Orchard team. This is Pravin’s second stint with us and Gaurav is a home grown leader, so they are both well immersed with the Leo Burnett HumanKind philosophy and our ambition to create globally aligned best in class work for our brands. At Orchard we have a great repertoire of iconic brands and we are looking forward to creating some outstanding work together. I wish both of them all the best in their new roles.”

Speaking on his appointment Gaurav Dudeja, Executive Vice President & Branch Head, Leo Burnett Orchard asserted, “I'm super excited with this opportunity, with both its significance and scope for impact. When I took the role of Branch Head for Leo Burnett Orchard in Bangalore 2 years back, I knew that I had to start building success by influencing 2 of the biggest ingredients of success in our business - people & culture. We now have an office that has a bunch of spirited, hungry people with an unstoppable momentum on new business and good work. And now with the national mandate, I feel we are poised for bigger, better things. The canvas is now wide open for me & Pravin to take our belief system of building India's strong new agency and make Leo Burnett Orchard the best version of Leo Burnett. I can't wait to get going – and learn and have fun along the way.”.

Adding further Pravin Sutar, Head of Creative, Leo Burnett Orchard commented, “I am very excited to be back with the Leo Burnett family. The passion and power of creating great ideas brings me back to the family. Rajdeepak Das, who understands the power of ideas will always keep pushing you for great creative output. Leo Burnett Orchard has a great set of clients who reflects the same passion and drive for excellence as Leo Burnett India. I’m really excited to collaborate with like-minded clients and create some iconic work. Not only digital but more than that. Orchard has not only demonstrated resilience but grown stronger in this adversity and I couldn’t be more thrilled to join this passionate team. Together with Gaurav, we want to build Leo Burnett Orchard as India’s most dominant new age agency. By backing up our strong creative ideas with newer material like technology and data, we want to bring out the right solution for real business problems for our clients.”

Reckitt Benckiser Elevates Gaurav Jain As India Head

Reckitt Benckiser has reverted to its original structure in India of one executive head for the geography, elevating Gaurav Jain as the overall chief of the company in the country four years after it had split the business into healthcare and hygiene revenue streams.

Jain, so far, had been in-charge of the India health business. A spokesperson for Reckitt Benckiser (RB) confirmed the top deck restructuring.

Executives aware of the restructuring details said jobs too have been impacted at the India unit of the maker of Dettol handwash and Airwick air fresheners.

Amit Wadhwa Named CEO Of Dentsu Creative India

On the back of its global organisational redesign, dentsu international has created a new structure for its creative service line in India. The restructuring will bring together some of India’s best agencies along with their digital & PR capabilities - all from the house of dentsu - under one umbrella with an aim to provide a more collaborative and aligned offering to clients. The brands that will come together as part of this redesign as dentsu Creative include Dentsu Webchutney, Taproot Dentsu, WATConsult, Perfect Relations, Isobar, Dentsu One, Dentsu India and Dentsu Impact. 

With the eventual consolidation under the two strong global brands - dentsumcgarrybowen (dentsuMB) and Isobar, dentsu Creative will provide digital-native, brand-led, customer-centric, creative, and strategic solutions to clients, effortlessly.    

In India, the dentsu Creative service line will be led by Amit Wadhwa as its chief executive officer (CEO). Amit will be responsible for the integration, co-ordination, and implementation of the overall strategy for dentsu Creative in the market. He will lead the dentsu India creative service line leadership team, reporting into Anand Bhadkamkar and the regional dentsu Creative leadership.  

Sidharth Rao, in addition to his current responsibilities, will now also be in charge of the brand dentsuMB Group in India as its CEO. He will work with the leadership team on dentsuMB’s brand strategy for the market. Shamsuddin Jasani, who continues to oversee the Isobar brand in South Asia as its Managing Director (MD), will also take on an additional role at dentsu Creative. He will now work with the regional and global leadership teams to support the Isobar practice area and will work closely with the Isobar Global leadership team on the same.  

Speaking on the new development, Anand Bhadkamkar, CEO India said, “This global restructure is about consolidation of capabilities across our brands and businesses with an aim to bring the best of our services to our clients and provide those specialisms without any hassles. The idea is to ultimately stand true to our #OneDentsu strategy and thus, transform into a sharper and leaner business partner to brands. The changes in the India leadership team only reflects a step ahead in bolstering and scaling up our market ambitions. Amit, Sid and Shams are amongst the strongest creative leaders not just within dentsu but across industry; and with the kind of experience and knowledge backing them, I am certain that they will steer dentsu towards excellence not just in India but beyond.”

The network has elevated Narayan Devanathan as President - Strategy & Integration for India, in addition to his current role as CEO, dentsu Solutions. This new role is designed to support and achieve dentsu’s strategic objectives by defining, implementing, and driving growth and other vital initiatives for the market. He will continue to report into Anand Bhadkamkar for his additional responsibility as part of the India market leadership team. Meanwhile, Narayan will now also don a regional hat as APAC Head for the dentsu Creative Strategy & Consulting practice.  

“Narayan has been instrumental in driving integration across our units and, as part of the South Asia integration initiatives, he will be supporting the Sri Lanka team in strategy and integration across the two markets. He will now be moving away from his current additional role as Chairperson, Creative Service Line for India and will take up a regional leadership role as APAC Lead - Strategy & Consulting Practice in the creative service line. In this role, he will be working with the Regional and Global leadership teams within the creative service line to help develop the area of Strategy & Consulting Practice in the APAC region,” Anand added.

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