Dentsu promotes Arijit Ray

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | January 16, 2014
Ray, erstwhile CEO of Dentsu Communications, has been given the mandate to lead new business development at Dentsu India Group.

Arijit Ray, erstwhile CEO of Dentsu Communications, has been given the mandate to lead new business development at Dentsu India Group.

Arijit Ray

Rohit Ohri

Simi Sabhaney, former president, Ogilvy Bengaluru and Chennai, has been appointed to take over Ray's role as CEO.

In his new role, Ray will work closely with Rohit Ohri, executive chairman, Dentsu India Group to plan and implement new business development strategies for the group.

Commenting on Ray's move to the Dentsu India Group, Ohri says, "Arijit has been a great partner to me in Dentsu's new exciting journey in India. I now wish to leverage his strengths in new business development for the entire group. I wish him all the luck in his new role."

Ray comments, "It was a pleasure working with Rohit and the journey across the last 20 months to grow Dentsu Communications across offices, into the largest agency of the Dentsu India Group, has been incredible. I now look forward to working closely with him to spearhead the New Business Acquisition strategy and efforts of Dentsu India Group. I wish Simi a great innings with Dentsu. With her vast experience on brands, I am sure she will leverage the momentum to chart out the next phase of growth for Dentsu Communications."

As CEO, Ray's key priority was to enhance and reinforce the agency's competencies and output, including overall creative, strategy and services, and also strengthen media synergies and drive growth. Earlier, Ray was president, Mudra West, DDB Mudra Group's Mumbai-based agency. Before being promoted as president, Ray was executive-vice president and head of Mudra West.

Ray's career in advertising began with Alfred Allan Advertising in the early '90s, from where he moved to Triton Communications. At Triton, he managed brands such as Geep Batteries, Salora TV and fax machines, and Flury's tea and confectionery products.

Later, Ray joined Rediffusion-Y&R where during his six and half year stint, he worked on brands such as Godfrey Philips India (Philip Moris), Rothmans, Jaisalmer, Northpole, United Airlines, DS Group, Rajasthan Tourism, Ericsson mobile phones, Canon Copies and Singer sewing machines. He was also a part of the team that worked on the re-launch of the Jaisalmer brand with Dentsu Inc., Tokyo.

Joining McCann Erickson, Delhi as associate account director in 1999, Ray led the Nescafe business as head of the team. Moving back to Rediffusion-Y&R, Delhi as account director in 2000, Ray was appointed business head on the Godfrey Philips portfolio. He also led the team to drive the new positioning of Maruti Suzuki Zen's 'Just add Zen to your life'.

In 2001, Ray moved to Rediffusion-Y&R, Kolkata as branch head. In about two and a half years, Ray turned around the business from a one-client operation to a stable seven client operation with four of Kolkata's top five clients, recording one of the best years for the Kolkata operation both in terms of revenue and profit.

In 2003, Ray moved back to Rediffusion DY&R, New Delhi as general manager on the Airtel national business.

In early 2004, Ray joined Ogilvy, Mumbai as vice-president and head of the Specialist Auto Practice Group, leading work on brands such as Bajaj Pulsar and CEAT Tyres. He also led the team to launch one of the most successful bikes in the Bajaj portfolio, Discover, and led the negotiation for Jackie Chan to endorse the brand.

Moving to Saatchi & Saatchi in 2005 as business head, Mumbai operations, Ray led Logan's India launch for Mahindra Renault. He also headed the Reliance Infocomm portfolio, and developed strong telecom experience, becoming the Knowledge Leader in the category for the agency in the MESA region, successfully driving the strategy development process for the Sony Ericsson pitch in India. In 2008, Ray joined Mudra as executive vice-president and head, Mudra West.

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