Ravi Kiran bids adieu to Starcom MediaVest Group

By Prajjal Saha , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Planning & Buying | September 30, 2010
Kiran has spent around 11 years at Starcom MediaVest Group; will continue in his present role till end of this year

Ravi Kiran, CEO, Starcom MediaVest Group, South Asia has called it quits. He confirmed the same to afaqs!, on Thursday afternoon. Kiran has spent around 11 years with Starcom. Besides being the CEO for South Asia, Kiran was also given the additional responsibility of setting up several non-classical businesses and disciplines across 11 markets in Asia as Emerging Market Leader - Specialist Solutions.

Kiran will continue in his present role till end of the year.

The agency is still working on finding a successor to Kiran, however both internal as well as external candidates will be evaluated.

In an earlier interview with afaqs!, Kiran had said, "In 40-odd years of my life, I find that very little went as planned." Every time, he changed his career path, there has been a book behind his move.

After studying medicine for a year, he decided to pursue Engineering, when he joined REC (regional Engineering College) Srinagar. He later on interned at three places - Hindustan Motors' passenger car plant in West Bengal, Hindustan Shipyard in Visakhapatnam and finally Air India's engine maintenance unit in Mumbai.

And after refusing two job offers from Mukund Iron and Larsen & Toubro, he finally joined FMS, Delhi to pursue his MBA.

At FMS, he was influenced by advertising after reading Stephen Fox's brilliant chronicle of the evolution of advertising - Mirror Makers: A History of American Advertising and its Creators. It was at FMS, 21 years ago when Preet Bedi offered him a job in Lintas, where he spent 7 years before moving on to the media side of the business with the group's media outfit, Initiative. A year later, he moved to Starcom Worldwide in 1998 as general manager, tactics and investment. From there he climbed up the ladder, first as the managing director, India - South & West, and later as the CEO, South Asia.

Later in the day, Andrew Swinand, SMG's President - Global Operations said in an official communique, "Kiran's vision and leadership have driven a period of tremendous growth for Starcom MediaVest Group in South Asia leading to a strong foundation for the future."

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