Just two days after Ogilvy India announced the appointment of Sonal Dabral as Vice Chairman and Group Chief Creative Officer, the agency has announced that its National Creaative Director Rajiv Rao has decided to move on.
Rao will continue as Ogilvy Indiaâs National Creative Leader till Dabral takes over and a smooth transition is complete.
Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman & Creative Director, Ogilvy South Asia, said, âIt is not at all easy for me, as I inform you that Rajiv Rao moves on from Ogilvy India to become a film maker. It has been Rajivâs dream to make films for the last four years. I have nothing but a deep sense of gratitude to Rajiv, that he respected my request to stay on to help make a better and stronger Ogilvy.Â There are not too many in this business who make a sacrifice of this magnitude.â
Rao joined Ogilvy in 1999 with his partner V. Mahesh. And shortly thereafter, they started blazing new trails.
âIn 2002, I had the joy of partnering him as a copywriter to create the legendary âSecond hand smoke killsâ campaign for Cancer Patients Aid Association. This campaign won Indiaâs first double Gold at Cannes,â added Pandey. "Whenever the Orange/Hutch/Vodafone history is written, Rajiv Raoâs name will feature in golden letters. Every piece of work on these brands has Rajivâs personal stamp on it."
The âsilent killerâ, Rao has always displayed phenomenal leadership skills without saying very much. Along with Mahesh, he led Ogilvy Bangalore from 2003 to 2006 and gave the office a renewed energy. In 2009, Rao and Abhijit Avasthi took on the role of National Creative Directors and raised the bar up many notches of creativity at Ogilvy India.Â And since 2015, Rao has played the role alone and compensated for his partner.
"Loved and admired by one and all in the industry, nationally and internationally, Rao is one of the finest creative people and the gentlest giant I have met in my life," said Pandey. âI am sure Rajiv will be no less a film maker than the creative leader he has been. We will stay connected in more ways than one.â
I will refrain from being personal and just say, âThank you Rajiv. You are a true son of Ogilvy India. Keep the flag flying,â concluded Pandey.