N. Shatrujeet

Everest in restructuring mode; Sourabh Mishra joins as national planning director

The 58-year-old Everest Integrated Communications has been in the midst of a major restructuring exercise, making several senior-level appointments across the country

Everest Integrated Communications, which has been rather quiet of late, has a lot speak about all of a sudden. The 58-year-old agency has been in the midst of a major restructuring exercise for the past few weeks, making several senior-level appointments across the country. With the sole purpose of strengthening its network and, in the process, creating a ‘new-age advertising powerhouse'.

When Mahesh Chauhan joined Everest as president in April this year, his mandate was simple: to make Everest an agency to reckon with. "My single-point programme to fulfill that mandate was to embark on a process of creating a team at Everest, which would offer the widest possible range of expertise in order to add value to existing businesses, and acquire new businesses," he says. "While the process of strengthening Team Everest will be continuous, and we are looking at several new appointments in the near future. I believe we today have the nucleus of an agency which will be able to compete and win against all opposition."

Amongst the significant additions to Team Everest is Sourabh Mishra, who joins the agency as national planning director. With over 12 years of experience, Mishra moves from O&M, where he was one of the key planning resources. Having worked both on the agency and the client side, Mishra has long been seen as one of the industry's brightest planning talents. Some of the accounts Mishra has worked with in the past include Coca-Cola, Cadbury's, HLL, ITC Foods, Himalaya, Dabur, Parle, NIIT and Titan.

Bolstering Everest's planning team further, Amit Kekre comes in as planning director, Mumbai. Kekre has worked with agencies such as O&M, Lowe and JWT, and has experience on accounts such as HLL, Marico, Standard Chartered, Tata Motors and BP-Castrol.

On the creative front, the Mumbai office has seen the entry of Vijay Lalwani as associate creative director. Lalwani, who recently concluded his stint at O&M, had had a Finalist nomination at Cannes this year. His recent work includes campaigns for Hutch, Sprite, Cadbury and Parle. In Mumbai, Anant Pal Singh has also moved in as account director from Rediffusion | DYR. Singh has extensive experience on brands such as BP-Castrol and AirTel.

Everest's Delhi office has also been strengthened with the appointment of Rajeev Rakshit as vice-president and head of office. Rakshit replaces Amitabha Lahiri, who had put in his papers some time ago. With over 13 years of experience, Rakshit comes to Everest from Publicis, and is regarded as a key member of the team behind the emergence of Publicis. Prior to Publicis, Rakshit was with Euro RSCG, Bangalore.

Rakshit brings with him significant experience in the technology arena acquired over the years working on brands such as Intel, HP-Compaq, Nokia, Microsoft and Motorola, in both national and regional roles. Joining Rakshit at Everest, Delhi, is Manisha Sethi as associate creative director. Sethi moves from Cheil Communications, where she was working on Samsung.

While Chauhan admits that attracting talent to Everest was initially an area of concern, the agency has managed putting a talented team in place. "The reality is that Everest had good people on board, but the addition of certain key ingredients was essential for the complete product to be a synergistic whole," he says. "The track records of the new appointments speak for themselves and provide completeness to the Everest offering. To sum it all up, as they say, we have managed to put together ‘a few good men (and women!)' and the next step for us is to acquire ‘a few (or lots) good businesses'." © 2004 agencyfaqs!