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Mukesh Ambani named Business Leader of the Year at IAA Leadership Awards

Vikram Sakhuja and Sonal Dabral adjudged media and creative agency leaders, respectively. Srinivasan Swamy was inducted into IAA Hall of Fame

(L-R) Dr. Micheal Oren, Srinivasan Swamy, Mukesh Ambani, Ramesh Narayan and PM Balakrishna

Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and MD of Reliance Industries, was named as the IAA Business Leader of the Year at the IAA Leadership Awards held at Trident Hotel, Mumbai on October 7.

The IAA Leadership Awards honour individuals in the fields of marketing, advertising and media, who have made enormous professional contributions and delivered business success to their companies.

The IAA Media Agency Leader award went to Vikram Sakhuja of Madison Communications while Sonal Dabral of Ogilvy & Mather India was adjudged as Creative Agency Leader. Rajan Anandan of Google was honoured with the IAA Media Leader Award.

Excellence in Journalism was celebrated with Rahul Joshi, Network18 News, winning the IAA Editorial Leader award and Shereen Bhan, CNBC-TV18 winning the IAA Leader – TV Anchor of the year. The Brand Endorsement Leader award went to Amitabh Bachchan and Alia Bhatt.

Srinivasan Swamy, Chairman and Managing Director, RK Swamy BBDO, was inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Powered by Colors, the awards ceremony was flagged off by Ambani and Deputy Minister of Diplomacy, PM’s office, Government of Israel, Michael Oren. Creating another momentous occasion at the awards was the unveiling of the book “Gandhi – The Great Communicator. The awards saw leaders representing advertising, marketing and media honoured by a group of pre-eminent guests.

On being awarded the Business Leader of the Year award, Ambani said, “On behalf of all of us at Reliance Industries, we would like to thank the jury and IAA for this recognition. I believe leadership is about setting new standards as demonstrated by our team at Jio. India was 155th in mobile broadband rankings in the world when we launched Jio but in a year, it became number 1 in the world. India is becoming a mobile first country and this is the future of our young nation.”

Commenting on the occasion, Ramesh Narayan, newly elected President of IAA, said, “We are privileged to have Mukesh Ambani and Dy. Minister of Diplomacy, PM’s Office, Government of Israel, Michael Orren with us. IAA Leadership Awards 2017 has been a memorable event thanks to the distinguished guests, esteemed jury and an exhaustive list of quantitative and qualitative parameters that have helped recognise outstanding campaigns and we have cherished our partnership with Colors.”

Speaking of his maiden visit to India, Oren said, “India is revered, respected and loved by the people of Israel.  Both countries are the cradle of great civilisations and religions. I can think of no two countries in the world that have had a greater impact on history and art. I would like to extend an invite to every Indian to visit Israel and experience our love for India and our hospitality.”

Speaking about Colors’ association with the awards, Raj Nayak, COO, Viacom18 Media, said, “We have been associated with the IAA Leadership Awards since inception and are happy to see it grow in size and stature year after year. As a leader in the media and entertainment space, we feel privileged to partner with The International Advertising Association in recognising and rewarding leaders in our country.”

Winners’ List – Fifth edition of the IAA Leadership Awards 2017:

Sr No




IAA Business Leader

Mukesh Ambani, Chairman & MD, Reliance Industries Limited


IAA Hall of Fame

Srinivasan Swamy, R K Swamy BBDO Pvt Ltd


IAA Media Agency Leader

Vikram Sakhuja, Madison Communications Pvt. Ltd.


IAA Creative Agency Leader

Sonal Dabral, DDB Mudra Group, India


IAA Media Leader

Rajan Anandan, Google


IAA Editorial Leader

Rahul Joshi, Network18 News


IAA Leader - TV Anchor

Shereen Bhan, CNBC-TV18


IAA Brand Endorsement Leader

Amitabh Bachchan


IAA Brand Endorsement Leader

Alia Bhatt


Marketer of the Year - Home Improvement

Amit Syngle, President - Sales & Marketing

Asian Paints Ltd.


Marketer of the Year – Banking

Ashish Marone, Head Marketing Communication, HDFC Bank Ltd.


Marketer of the Year - Insurance

Shiv Prabhat, Executive Director

- Micro Insurance Life Insurance Corporation of India


Marketer of the Year - FMCG -Food

Kishore Jhala

Chief Operating Officer, GCMMF(Amul)


Marketer of the Year - Consumer Durables – Electronics

Ranjivjit Singh, Sr. VP Marketing

Samsung India Electronics Pvt. Ltd


Marketer of the Year - Consumer Durables – Others

Ranjivjit Singh, Sr. VP Marketing

Samsung India Electronics Pvt. Ltd


Marketer of the Year - Auto (Two Wheelers)

Y S Guleria,

Vice President - MarketingHonda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt. Ltd.


Marketer of the Year - Auto (Four Wheelers)

Randhir Singh Kalsi,

Sr Executive Director- Marketing&Sales

Maruti Suzuki India Ltd


Marketer of the Year - E-Commerce

Ravi Desai, CMO

Amazon India Seller Service Pvt Ltd 


Marketer of the Year - FMCG -Beverages

Anjana Ghosh, Director Marketing

Bisleri International Pvt Ltd


Marketer of the Year - FMCG - Homecare

Pradeep Wadekar

Head Sales - Western Region , RSPL Limited


Marketer of the Year - FMCG - Personal care

Shalini Raghavan, CMO

L'Oréal India Pvt. Ltd


Marketer of the Year – Retail

Pawan Sarda, Group Head - Gigital

Future Retail Limited


Marketer of the Year - Mobile Devices

Ranjivjit Singh, Sr. VP Marketing

Samsung India Electronics Pvt. Ltd


Marketer of the Year - Telecom

Adarsh Verma - Head Marketing,Bharti Airtel Ltd.

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