After the IPG
buyout, Lowe India has witnessed a flurry of activity - the IPG buyout proceeds being distributed to some of its long-time employees, the Balki-Prem Mehta showdown and, finally, the exit of Priti Nair from the agency.
"This assignment builds on Ashish's broad experience across the marketing spectrum. He will help us take Lowe to the next level in a dynamic region," says Stephen Gatfield, CEO, Lowe Worldwide, and EV-P, IPG, in an official communiqué. Bhasin has nearly 20 years of experience in various advertising verticals, including running the Hindustan Unilever account in seven Asian countries, managing operations in various Lintas India offices, and as president of Initiative Media.
R Balakrishnan (Balki), national creative director, Lowe India, is likely to take over as chairman of Lowe in the country, while COO Pranesh Misra may be elevated to CEO. However, when asked by agencyfaqs!, Balki hedged that this was speculation and offered a terse "No comments".
Misra was slightly more forthcoming. "One will get to hear about these developments shortly," he said.
Balki's elevation would quite obviously imply a revised role for Prem Mehta, currently chairman, Lowe India. Will Mehta quit Lowe? "Prem will continue with Lowe," Misra clarifies, "but I cannot reveal in what capacity." Whether Mehta will take on an advisory position at Lintas, or assume a larger role in the APAC region, is not known.
The restructuring at Lowe will come into effect in early 2008.