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DAN elevates Samarjit Choudhry as President and Soumitra Karnik as CCO at Happy mcgarrybowen

Choudhry joined the Network in 2017 as COO, Happy mcgarrybowen India. Karnik has been given additional charge at HMB other than his current position of Chief Creative Officer at Dentsu Impact

(L) Samarjit Choudhry and Soumitra Karnik (R)

Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN) has elevated Samarjit Choudhry to the role of President, Happy mcgarrybowen (HMB). The group has also entrusted Soumitra Karnik, Chief Creative Officer at Dentsu Impact, with the additional charge of Chief Creative Officer (CCO) at HMB.

The leadership positions were vacant for quite some time at the agency ever since Kartik Iyer and Praveen Das were asked to leave when allegations of sexual harassment were made against them in October last year.

Choudhry joined the Network in 2017 as COO, Happy mcgarrybowen, India. Armed with more than 20 years of experience, he has worked with agencies such as Ogilvy and Leo Burnett. At Leo Burnett, he was the Chief Growth Officer for the Group and was also instrumental in setting up Orchard and Black Pencil for them. In addition, he has also worked to create India’s premier comic book content company, Virgin Comics.

Speaking on his appointment, Choudhry said, “mcgarrybowen has a strong philosophy of solving real problems. They truly operate as a media-agnostic agency. In India, the foundation for this is already there and the agency has been operating as Happy mcgarrybowen for over two years now. My mandate is to take it to the next level. Other than communication, we already have a strong design practice and in conjunction with the other offerings from DAN, today we offer our clients a one-stop solution for whatever their needs might be. I look forward to taking the opportunity to take the legacy forward. And all we ask is, ‘Give us your biggest problem’.”

Karnik joined the network in 2012. Prior to that, he was an ECD at JWT. In over 11 years spent there, he worked on a variety of clients, including Pepsi, Airtel, Nestle and Hero Honda. Karnik has also worked at Lowe and Percept. Among his notable campaigns are ‘Pepsi Yeh Hai Youngistaan Meri Jaan’, Slice Aamsutra, ‘Yaari Ki Gaadi’ for Hero Honda Splendour NXG, and the ‘What Makes Us Click’ Campaign for Canon, to name a few.

Speaking about the role, Karnik said, “Happy mcgarrybowen is a phenomenal creative brand and has an enviable body of work to prove it. All these years, I have greatly admired them from a distance and I count my blessings for being given this opportunity to be a part of their creative trajectory. I assume this role with utmost confidence only because the culture of HMB will not have it any other way. I shall take my mandate from Gordon Bowen, our Global CCO, in the coming days and will talk about it soon. Personally, I’d like to build a collaborative creative culture where everyone works with everyone and everyone learns from everyone. There is so much talent out there in the world and sometimes all it takes is a simple call to say, ‘Hi, I have this idea and I need you to make it even more amazing’. Most clients deserve a spectacular package. Anything less is just plain misfortune.”

Ashish Bhasin

Ashish Bhasin, CEO Greater South, Dentsu Aegis Network and Chairman and CEO India, said, “With its new leadership in place, I am more than confident that the agency is now in extremely able hands. Happy mcgarrybowen has always been a brand to reckon with and I have no doubt that Samarjit and Soumitra, together, will further fuel this brand legacy and help Happy mcgarrybowen scale new heights.”

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