Ian Rowden, chairman and CEO- Asia Pacific, Saatchi & Saatchi was in the city recently and spoke to Campaign India about the task ahead for the agency’s India operations. With the appointment of Ramanuj Shastry as national creative director and Sourabh Misra as national planning head recently, Rowden says the process that was started a year back, when Kamal Basu became CEO, is finally falling into place.
“We are midway in our three year plan that Kamal (Basu) and I put into place at the beginning of last year when I arrived. The plan is to double our business in three years. We have been growing rapidly, which is exciting,” Rowden comments.
He says there was a four part plan that they put into place last year, which is now seeing results. “The first was to put a team in place around Kamal and grow our business, which we have done. With Ramanuj and Sourabh in place, it’s moving according to plan,” he adds.
Rowden further added, “Being Saatchi, our core focus was creativity so we also made a conscious decision to substantially improve upon the quality of our work. As an agency, we know we are never going to be the biggest and that has never been our objective. We are going to be known for our creative output, not just for creativity sake but also from a strategy and creative solutions point of view.”
Rowden says their third objective was to win meaningful new local business in the country. “MTS was one of our biggest wins this year. Consolidating our business and keeping the base growth really profitable was a part of this plan."
The last part, according to Rowden, was to look at strategic acquisitions. "We have been keeping our eyes open for any complementary skill set that can help us to add more value to our client’s business. There are some skill sets that we are going to introduce ourselves. We have a very successful shopper marketing practice called Saatchi & Saatchi X and Kamal is going to bring that to our business in the next six to twelve months. We have the experise, the process and protocols and we are going to bring it here ourselves,” he added.
(For the rest of the interview, read the next issue of Campaign India dated July 17)