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Sunil Punjabi joins AXN as business head, India

Punjabi comes to Sony Pictures Television's AXN from Cinemax, where he put in his papers in May as CEO. At AXN, he will lead the channel's India operations.

Sony Pictures Television (SPT) has appointed Sunil Punjabi to lead Indian operations for AXN. The network has created a new role of business head for him. He will report to Ricky Ow, executive vice-president and general manager, networks, Asia, Sony Pictures Television. Ow is based in the company's regional head office in Singapore.

Sunil Punjabi

However, Punjabi will be based in Mumbai and will lead the local team in all business functions. He will also be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day management of the channels, with the development of business opportunities and channel equity.

He will implement go-to-market strategy for new channels and also oversee the development, acquisition and production of a content mix for SPT's networks in India.

In an official communiqué, Ow says, "We are pleased to welcome Punjabi to drive our business in India. His acumen and experience across all functions will be key assets to lead our channels to greater heights in one of Asia's largest and most competitive TV markets."

Punjabi joins SPT from Cinemax India, where he put in his papers in May as chief executive officer.

An MBA from KJ Somaiya Institute, Punjabi completed his post graduation in business management in 2000. He then joined Zee Telefilms as ad sales executive in 2000. After a year, he moved to Fashion TV, India as head of marketing.

Subsequently, he shifted to the multiplex, Fame India in strategic planning in 2003. In 2006, he joined STAR TV as business development manager. Between 2007 and 2009, Punjabi played an important role in the formation of Fox Star Studios, the joint venture between Twentieth Century Fox and STAR TV, where he was responsible for business development, movie acquisition, deal structuring, syndication and exploitation of movie rights across all media platforms.

Later, he worked at Multi Screen Media as senior vice-president for business development, leading the new media, mobile telephony and syndication divisions' integration with the company's sports and music TV channels.

In 2010, he moved to join Cinemax as CEO and served there till May 25, 2012.

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