Durgesh Kaushik joins Snapchat as Head of Market Development, India
Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, has hired its first employee in India – Durgesh Kaushik will lead local market development activities, including strategic partnerships, community development and overall ecosystem initiatives that support growth. Kaushik will initially split time between Mumbai and Bengaluru. Prior to joining Snapchat, Kaushik worked in leadership roles at several Indian start-ups, most recently as CEO and co-founder of Wishfie. He also spent over three years at Facebook in marketing roles in APAC and EMEA, and worked at Jio selected through their young leadership program.
The announcement builds on recent initiatives to create an engaging and locally relevant experience for Indian Snapchatters.
The company added more than 10 local content partners to Discover at the end of 2018, rapidly grew official accounts, and introduced support for Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Punjabi in March with southern Indian and other major languages to follow soon.
Snapchat has also partnered with local sport and entertainment entities, including several Indian Premier League teams as well as production houses Red Chillis Entertainment and Excel Entertainment for the movies ‘Zero’ and ‘Gully Boy’. It is supporting the work of the Election Commission of India to encourage civic participation and engagement at the ongoing Lok Sabha Elections. Snapchat has also started a college program with 25 reps in 20 leading institutions in Bengaluru and Mumbai, and plans to expand to other colleges in major cities.
Commenting on Kaushik’s appointment, Nana Murugesan, Managing Director of International Markets, said, “We are delighted to welcome Durgesh on board as our Employee #1 based in market at such an exciting time for our business in India. We are encouraged by the product-market fit, strong momentum in recent months and the announcement this week that we have completed 100 per cent rollout of our new app for Android will be an important lever for accelerating user growth in a market where it powers more than 90 per cent of smartphones.”
Durgesh Kaushik, Head of India Market Development, added here, “I see an enormous opportunity for Snapchat in India, where people are embracing the opportunity to communicate quickly and easily with the people that matter to them without the pressure of likes and followers. Snapchat is already seeing solid growth locally and I’m excited to scale this over 2019 and beyond. A priority for me will be to continue the great work to date in developing and supporting local partnerships by extending their breadth and scope.”