Ad media company GroupM has appointed Lakshmi Narasimhan as chief growth officer, South Asia. Narasimham will be responsible for media partnerships and digital teams. Narasimhan will be reporting to CVL Srinivas, CEO, GroupM South Asia. GroupM has also merged Central Trading Group with GroupM’s digital platforms, with his appointment and both these teams will report to Narasimhan.
Chronologically, Narasimhan worked as AOR director at Madison World, investment director at Group M’s media buying agency Mindshare, national director of Central Trading Group at GroupM for 2.5 years, CEO of publishing at Infomedia18, CEO of Web18 and Mobile18, corporate strategy at Network18 and in big data solutions at Crayon Data.
Narasimhan had moved to a corporate role at Network18 after Durga Raghunath took over his role in April last year. Before joining GroupM, he had joined big data firm Crayon Data to head its “mobile and data transformation” offering, focusing on its advertising, FMCG and media verticals. Narasimhan was also responsible for front-ending Crayon Data’s partnership with Mindshare, to develop the latter’s adaptive marketing offering in Asia-Pacific region. Former Vivaki Chairpersonal Srikant Sastri is an investor in Crayon Data.
In December last year, GroupM had appointed Vikram Sakhuja as the global group strategy officer of the company, after his previous position as global CEO was passed on to Lindsay Pattison in October last year. The company had said then that Sakhuja would remain with the group, without specifying what exactly his role in the company would be.
Sakhuja had been named Maxus CEO in 2012, before which he was CEO South Asia for GroupM, for a period of six and a half years. He had joined GroupM in 2002 as Managing Director of Mindshare Fulcrum, and was promoted to the position of Managing Director of Mindshare South Asia, and subsequently to the CEO position. He has had stints with STAR India, Coca-Cola Company India and Procter & Gamble as well.