In a significant development, Pratap Bose, chief operating officer of the Omnicom-owned DDB Mudra Group, and chief executive officer of Mudra Max, the group's media, OOH, retail and experiential division, has resigned from the agency.
According to industry buzz, Madhukar Kamath, group chief executive officer and managing director of the DDB Mudra Group, has been given a four year extension at the agency. Sources attribute Bose's resignation to this development, as Bose was expected to land the top job at the agency, post Kamath's expected retirement.
This decision, sources reason, can probably be traced back to the desk of John Zeigler, chairman and CEO, DDB Group, Asia Pacific (India and Japan).
Bose, who joined DDB Mudra from O&M in 2008, is also a part of the group's operating board. He has, over the past few years, spearheaded the group's participation in industry awards as well.
At the company level, his mandate was to drive the vision and growth strategy for three independent agencies under the DDB Mudra Group umbrella, namely, DDB Mudra, DDB Mudra Max and Mudra Advertising.
At DDB Mudra, on a day to day level, Bose has been the group's growth engine as far as the media planning/buying, activation and outdoor verticals are concerned; he has been responsible for much of the growth in the group's revenue.
Kamath, on the other hand, handles the agency's mainline, advertising business; the 'brand side' of the group reports directly to Kamath. As an industry observer points out, veterans like Bose who specialise and excel in BTL and other so-called ancillary divisions of the agency system, sometimes get a raw deal when faced with contenders who're in the mainline, pitch-driven advertising game.
The recent appointment of a digital specialist as CEO of an advertising agency makes one see how digital is beginning to be perceived as a discipline at par with mainstream advertising. But perhaps, when it comes to BTL, just like in the West, we're yet to emancipate ourselves from the 'caste' system.
Prior to joining Mudra, Bose was with O&M for 17 years; in 2006, he was named (youngest) CEO of the agency.
A chartered accountant, Bose has also worked across international markets including Asia and Eastern Europe. Last year, he was appointed president of the Ad Club.