Ajit Shah, ex-president, Everest Integrated Communication, has joined Delhi-based creative hotshop Dhar & Hoon as executive director
Ajit Shah, ex-president, Everest Integrated Communication, has joined Delhi-based creative hotshop Dhar & Hoon as executive director. He assumed office on March 1. Confirming the move, he told agencyfaqs!, "While I can't describe myself as an investing partner - in the sense I don't have any equity in the company - I would be one of the partners here. However, we are still trying to thrash out what role each of the partners will play under the new dispensation."
agencyfaqs! diehards would recall the article Everest president Ajit Shah puts in his papers (January 24, 2002), where we had reported why he decided to quit the agency (Everest) after 22 years of unbroken service. That time he had said he wanted to take it easy for a couple of months before taking up a new assignment.
As it turns out he gave himself a month's break before getting back to business. "I have known Ajit Hoon for many years now… we worked together at Everest. And, as I told you earlier (when agencyfaqs! wrote about his decision to quit Everest), I wanted to get back to the business of advertising rather than the management or administrative part of an agency's life. Now I would be doing just that," said Shah.
To put Shah's career into perspective, he entered the world of advertising when he joined Everest in 1979 - when the agency's Delhi branch was being set up - after a brief stint at Hindustan Times. In 1991, Shah moved to take charge of the agency's Mumbai office when Munawar Sayeed (managing director) and Ali Merchant (deputy managing director) left the agency to form Triton Advertising. After an eight-year stint at the agency's Mumbai branch, Shah returned to Delhi in 1999.
On its part, Dhar & Hoon started its journey as a hotshop when Abhinav Dhar and Ajit Hoon left their jobs in 1994 to form the eponymous agency Dhar & Hoon (1998-99 billings: Rs 15 crore). The agency's positioning as a creative hotshop earned it kudos and clients. It has to its credit campaigns like BPL (with Amitabh Bachchan), Pepsi and Punj Lloyd. After a while, when the two admen realised that they lacked an essential ingredient - strategic inputs - they began looking for a partner, and even considered linking up with a global network. When they were on the verge of striking a deal with Euro RSCG in 1999, Dhar and Hoon met Dharen Chadha and the three joined hands to relaunch Dhar & Hoon as Chadha Dhar & Hoon.
However, late last year, Chadha broke ties with the other two partners to return to Bangalore to rejuvenate his consultancy outfit. With Ajit Shah, the agency hopes to fill up the void left by Chadha. "To provide a complete range of services, every agency requires strategic inputs. I hope to contribute in this arena, while producing great creative work," Shah said. Â© 2002 agencyfaqs!