Ashish Joshi, former Vice President, Business Development of Dhingana has joined CA Media’s digital celebrity venture Fluence, reports Radioandmusic. He had quit Dhingana last week after a short nine months stint with the company, as indicated by a separate Radioandmusic report.
While the Radioandmusic didn’t mention Joshi’s designation at the company, Joshi’s LinkedIn profile indicates that he has been appointed as Vice President Digital & Business Head – Fluence. Update: The company has told that Joshi will help the company incubate and scale various consumer facing businesses in the New Media sector, along with managing Fluence. He will report to Rishi Negi, EVP Investee Operations at CA Media.
Prior to Dhingana, Joshi had served as Head of Digital and Business Development (India and SAARC) at Universal Music India for four years and as General Manager at Hungama for three years.
The details on what Fluence does are sparse: it’s website has no information on its business, only a login page for celebrities. However, CA Media CEO Rajesh Kamat had told in an interview to The Hollywood Reporter that Fluence manages digital endorsements and digital rights for its clients, which includes mobile and online rights. It also manages social media presence for these clients and allows them to track their social media interaction across Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and others social media platforms.
Its clients include Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan and Karisma Kapoor and going forward, it plans to sign up South Indian stars and a few cricket players. When we checked, we noticed that Fluence website was showcasing content from the Tumblr blogs from the three celebrities and also provided links to the official social media accounts of these celebrities on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.
Celebrity Tech Investments: What’s particularly interesting is that Kamat also told in the interview that Fluence will apparently manage celebrity’s possible investments in digital tech businesses. He said if they find an interesting investment in the digital space, CA Media formulates a financing and places a celebrity as part of the deal, through which the company gets the investment and the celebrity gets long term equity in the company.
Note that all the three celebrities above have inked ‘Endorsements in return for a stake’ deals in tech companies earlier, however these were made on a personal capacity and not routed through CA Media. Amitabh Bachchan has 0.1% stake in the recently IPO’d JustDial, Salman Khan has minority stake in the online travel portal Yatra and Karishma Kapoor had invested an undisclosed amount in Babyoye in December 2011, following which she was the largest individual shareholder in the company. So we wonder if more such deals are in the offing through CA Media.