Sudhanshu Vats, Group Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of media and entertainment conglomerate Viacom18, a subsidiary of Network18.
Vats has decided to quit the company after a stint of eight years to join Essel Propack, a packaging manufacturer of laminated plastic tubes for the FMCG and Pharma space. He has also been appointed as an additional director of the company effective from 16 April 2020. In his new role at Essel Propack, he has also been designated as key managerial personnel pursuant to the Companies Act 2013.
Rahul Joshi, Managing Director of the Network18 Group, will now be responsible for the verticals previously under Vats.
In his tenure, Vats has helped expand the media network’s footprint into new business lines of digital, experiential entertainment and consumer products, the company said in a statement.
Sudhanshu is a dynamic and admired leader in corporate India today. Not only has he led from the front in shaping up Viacom18’s growth story, he has also championed the cause of the sector at the various industry bodies that he has captained. While we are sad to lose him, it is equally reassuring to know that we have a strong second line that’s raring to go. I’d like to wish Sudhanshu all the very best for his future endeavours," Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman of the Board, Network18, said in a statement.
Reflecting about his journey at Viacom18, Vats said, “It has been an extremely challenging and satisfying eight years at the helm of Viacom18. I have had the privilege of working with some of the best minds in media and entertainment industry to chart the growth story of Viacom18. We have together built one of the most admired media company of brilliant storytellers with a diversified presence across screens and platforms. As I look forward to taking up newer challenges, I shall always cherish the learnings in leading India’s youngest and fastest-growing media and entertainment company.”
Prior to joining Viacom18, Vats spent more than 20 years in Unilever in various sales and marketing and general management roles. During his tenure, he has shaped many popular household brands, most notably Lipton, Vim, Wheel, Surf, Rin, Lifebuoy, Dove, Pears and Lux. He has also done a short-term assignment on Modern Trade (Organized Retailing) in Thailand. During 2004-2005, Sudhanshu worked with BP in India as VP Marketing and successfully re-launched the Castrol Master brand. Vats holds an M.B.A. from Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad. He received his Bachelor of Technology degree in Mechanical Engineering from National Institute of Technology, Kurukshetra. He has more than 28 years of industry experience across FMCG and media sectors.
Vats has also served as vice-president at the Indian Broadcasting Foundation, chairman of the National Media and Entertainment Committee of CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) and chairman of BARC India.
He shall be serving at Viacom18 till 15 April 2020. The company statement did not disclose his future plans.