Sumita Vaid

Tarun Ahuja joins RKSwamy/BBDO as vice-president

His brief is “to grow the business of the Delhi branch and set the quality parameters right”

Lately, the Delhi branch of RKSwamy/BBDO has been in the news a bit. The latest appointment at the office, since Sunil Gupta took charge as COO, is that of Tarun Ahuja, who has joined the agency as vice-president. The appointment marks a full circle for Ahuja, alias Terry, who has had a chequered career ranging from ad agencies to a television channel to setting up his own below-the-line consultancy. But more of that later.

Currently in the midst of ‘orientation travel' to all the branches of RKSwamy/BBDO, Ahuja spoke to agencyfaqs! about his new posting. He says his brief, very simply put, is "to grow the business of the Delhi branch and set the quality parameters right". And while he admits that the entrusted task is challenging, Ahuja believes his cumulative experience will come in handy.

Ahuja began his career with MAA (now MAA Bozell) in 1985 as senior account executive, client services. Two and a half years later, he joined Mudra Communications. Seven years on, the road led to Lintas (now Lowe), where he was general manager of Delhi II - the second unit of agency, with accounts like MasterCard, RCI's Cherry Blossom, the regional account of Dettol, BSL Suiting, Casablanca and Pringle.

After a couple of years at Lowe, Ahuja joined Home TV, where he worked with the likes of Karan Thapar, Pradeep Chanda (ex-HMV), and Mohan Bharara, who now heads a Sri Lankan television channel. "C&S was growing then, and opportunities were immense," he explains. In 1997, Ahuja joined Dhar & Hoon, and in 1998, he went solo to set up his company, Nut Crackers - a consultancy for below-the-line activities. Two years later, he started Nut Crackers Brand Windows, an in-software placement for videos and cinemas.

Mudra and Lowe, in particular, gave Ahuja a holistic exposure in terms of managing people and growing the business. "My experience at Mudra was largely people and systems-oriented," he says. "Lintas, on the other hand, was essentially growing the business and concentrating on bottomlines." He will have the opportunity to draw extensively from both pools of acquired knowledge while meeting the ‘growth' and ‘quality' objectives set before him at RKSwamy/BBDO.

Commenting upon his return to the agency circuit, Ahuja says, "There are exciting times ahead - for all of us at RKSwamy/BBDO. With Sunil Gupta coming in too, the agency is getting into high gear. Moreover, here I get the opportunity to work with like-minded people such as Shekhar and Sundar Swamy, and Pankaj Mridul." © 2003 agencyfaqs!

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