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Ashish Bhasin on APAC leadership, Bhadkamkar’s promotion, the road ahead

Dentsu Aegis Network today announced the appointment of Ashish Bhasin, CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network Greater South into the newly created role of CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network, APAC, effective immediately. Based in Singapore, he joins the Dentsu Aegis Network Global Executive team and will report into Takaki Hibino, Executive Chairman, Dentsu Aegis Network APAC. Takaki’s role as Executive Chairman, APAC remains the same.

This move further cements the recently announced Cluster Structure; Greater North, Greater South and ANZ in APAC, giving the markets and their leadership teams greater focus on identifying and moving into key growth opportunities. Ashish will focus on accelerating this growth while delivering greater operational rigor and leadership excellence across the region. These changes reflect evolving market dynamics across the region, mitigating the disruption that new entrants, shifting consumer demands and technological evolution creates by focusing on delivering long-term, sustainable growth for our clients. Ashish will maintain his role as Chairman, Dentsu Aegis Network India.

Commenting on Ashish’s elevation, Takaki Hibino, Executive Chairman, Dentsu Aegis Network APAC said: “Ashish’s appointment is critical for the region; enabling the markets to focus on client needs and growth opportunities while delivering operational rigor for the business. He was a clear candidate from the start with a proven track record of delivering long-term and consistent growth. Under his leadership, the business in India is now the second largest Advertising & Media organisation by revenue in the market. His long-term vision coupled with his acumen for identifying an opportunity is one of the best in the business, and I am delighted he will join me in leading the business in APAC.”

Ashish Bhasin, CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network APAC commented: “I am thrilled to be taking on this new role within the APAC region. There is never a more exciting time to be in this business; our competitive landscape is becoming more complex and fragmented while our clients are crying out for long-term vision and simplicity. We have to keep their needs as our North Star whilst delivering long-term, sustainable growth for our business. We are in a unique position to build propositions around our client needs, and I look forward to this next chapter in the transformation journey of this region.” 

Anand Bhadkamkar
Anand Bhadkamkar

In India, Anand Bhadkamkar, erstwhile  COO & CFO, South Asia, has now been promoted to CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network India. Anand will continue to report to Ashish Bhasin in his new role.

Anand Bhadkamkar, CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network India commented: “I am extremely excited and honoured to take on this new responsibility. I look forward to embarking upon a new chapter in my career and work with Ashish as the Chairman of India to continue building DAN into the country’s most innovative, future-proofed market-leading network. Our One P&L philosophy and our leadership status in Digital sets us up in the best position versus our competitors.” 

In addition, Masaya Nakamura, Deputy Chairman & Chief Growth Officer, APAC has taken a new role as  CEO, Global Solutions, Dentsu Aegis Network, based in Tokyo. He will remain on the Global Executive Board. Prakash Kamdar, CEO, Isobar Singapore has been promoted to CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network Singapore.

In a telephonic interaction with Adgully, Ashish Bhasin speaks about his new APAC leadership role and also how will continue to be actively involved in India, how Anand Bhadkamkar will power India operations and more. 

What will be your key focus areas in your new role as CEO DAN APAC?
I think the biggest success and the edge that we as a network have is our one P&L. We have the widest capabilities and under one umbrella we can bring great benefits to our clients. My focus is going to be on that extraordinary sense that we have in every market where we use a one P&L philosophy and bring best-in-class services to our clients. We are living in a dynamic fast changing world at all times, hence we need to make sure that our business is future proof. I would like to see that every single market in the APAC has a clear plan for the future. 

With Anand Bhadkamkar’s promotion as CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network India, how do you plan to further fortify your India operations?
Anand has been an integral part of DAN’s success story in India. He has been with us from day one and we have been working together. In fact, in his last role as COO, he was running the operations in India. Therefore, there is great continuity. Anand brings with him huge experience and great vision. It is great to have a person who has been involved and has worked so closely and architected the India story. 

Having said that, I would like to state that I’m not going away. I’m still retaining the Chairmanship of India. I will be in India and will be retaining my office in India. I will continue to work with clients from India; wherever I’m needed – in media or partners or anybody. So, clients have that access, wherever they may be. While I will be handing over the operational running to Anand as the India CEO, I will continue to be the Chairman and actively involved. 

There have been quite a few changes and elevations in DAN’s leadership recently. How are those changes going to strengthen the India team?
Even though the industry is facing a downturn, we are in a happy scenario where all our businesses are growing in a very healthy manner. This is a great time for us to bring in the best talent that is available in the market for each of our businesses. We believe that DAN India is the preferred employer for any advertising professional. Irrespective of which part of advertising – be it media or digital – one is looking at, merit will pave the way for the future in this fast growing network. There is a lot of talent available in India and we would like 100 per cent of the best people to be in DAN India Network.

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