Sumita Vaid

JWT's Surajit Roy joins Contract as Delhi head

Roy would be filling up the slot vacated by the sudden departure of Pankaj Mridul, who had put in his papers in the last week of March

Surajit Roy, who till recently was vice-president and client services director at JWT, is stepping into a new role, not within the agency, but sister agency Contract Advertising. Roy is joining as head of Contract's Delhi office.

Though an official confirmation was hard to come by as both Contract's CEO Jagdip Bakshi and Roy were unavailable for comments, sources in the know confirm the move.

Roy would be filling up the slot vacated by the sudden departure of Pankaj Mridul, who had put in his papers in the last week of March.

Right now, it is not clear when Roy will come on board, the decision to appoint him as in-charge of Contract Delhi has been taken by the Thompson Group.

This is the second high-profile appointment at Contract in recent times. Earlier this month, Ravi Deshpande, the erstwhile head of Lemon, had joined the agency as the Chief Creative Officer.

Roy is an old hand at JWT. In fact, he had launched his career in advertising with JWT and has been working with the outfit for the last 18 years. Some of the accounts that Roy has worked on include Thompson’s social portfolio, ESPN, Cargill Purita, Timex, and of course, Frito Lays. In addition to discharging his client servicing duties, Roy was heading JWT’s Chandigarh office as well.

Roy’s task no doubt would be fraught with challenges. Prime among the stated objectives would be to, needless to say, boost the morale of the people of the agency. A certain degree of disillusionment may have set in as the office has failed to attract stable and sustained leadership over the last few years.

People movements from JWT to Contract, or vice-versa, are rare and far between. Apart from the current JWT CEO Colvyn Harris, Jagdip Bakshi himself, or Syeda Imam, now JWT's executive creative director, there haven’t been too many high profile people who have moved.

Before Jagdip Bakshi took charge of Contract, agencyfaqs! had quizzed him on whether he would be looking to hire from JWT, and perhaps, from among his loyalists. To that Bakshi had replied, “You do not poach people from the agencies of the same group. However, if a person leaves JWT and is looking for a job, the person can be considered by other agencies of the group…”

And, when agencyfaqs! had persisted by asking that if, as Bakshi explained, WPP discouraged people movement within the network, how did he explain his own shift from JWT to Contract, or for that matter of Colvyn Harris, he reasoned, “Agencies are not made of one or two people. A person at the top might get a key job at the Ogilvy network, or WPP may decide to pull out a person from JWT or Bates or Ogilvy for a new set up. That is an exception and does not happen everyday.” (Read the full interview)... © 2005 agencyfaqs!