Rising Star Awards 2023- Winners

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BestMediaInfo reveals jury for Rising Star Awards 2021

The jury panel led by industry veterans and media heads of India’s top brands will pick winners in 19 categories

BestMediaInfo has on-boarded 11 industry veterans and media heads of India’s top brands as jury members for the inaugural Rising Star Awards 2021. The awards will honour young achievers in media strategy across brands and agencies.

Rising Star Awards 2021 Entries Open - ENTER NOW

The esteemed jury panel will pick winners in 19 categories through a fully transparent and automated judging process guided by the Advisory Board of the awards. Click here for the detailed judging process and judging criteria.

The jury line-up (in alphabetical order) for the India TV presents Rising Star Awards:

Ajit Varghese
CCO, Sharechat

Ajit Varghese

Varghese, a Keralite by birth who was brought up in Orissa, is an accomplished client-centric and digital-focused Global Media Leader with a track record of working with the publisher side of business, turning around underperforming agencies, leading rapid growth and market dominance. He possesses deep knowledge of consumer, content, technology and commerce, which has exceeded client expectations over time.

Varghese earned a track record of success of over 25 years by leading large-scale business transformations, building diverse and successful businesses around creative, digital, data, content, partnerships and experiential media. With experience of working in various cities in India, Asia and in London, he is skilled at driving change by building vision and a strong inclusive employee culture, backing it with products/capabilities and ensuring delivery with strong accountability.

Anjali Krishnan
Head of Media, Mondelez India

Anjali Krishnan

Krishnan is the Head of Media for Mondelez in India and Bangladesh. She comes with nearly 15 years of experience in advertising and marketing, working with both agency as well as corporate organisations with expertise in Media Strategy, Business Planning and Analytics, Research, Brand Development, and handling P&L.

Prior to Mondelez India, she was associated with well-known brands such as Virgin Mobile India, TVS Motor Company, as well as leading agencies like Group M and Lintas across key clients such as Hindustan Unilever, ITC and many more.

Krishnan is passionate about the subject of clinical psychology, especially in the realm of neuro-behavioural and neuro-developmental science. Her other hobbies include running, blogging and painting.

Archana Aggarwal
VP Media, Airtel

Archana Aggarwal

In her 7.5-year stint with Airtel, Aggarwal has helped improve the media product by delivering customised media strategies for each offering as well as delivered efficient media buying and planning.

Aggarwal is a passionate media advocate with 25+ years of experience in media, out of which the first 10 years were in media agencies such as McCann-Erickson and Mindshare. She has headed media at P&G and Airtel in the last 15 years.

Atit Mehta
Marketing Head, Byju’s

Atit Mehta

As the Head of Marketing for the world’s most valuable education technology company, Byju’s, Mehta has spearheaded Brand Strategy and Marketing across ATL, BTL and Digital for over three years.

He joined Byju’s from Sequoia Capital India, which was an investor in Byju’s. He was Vice-President and Head of Media at Sequoia Capital.

A Masters in Marketing and Advertising from Lala Lajpatrai Institute of Management, Mehta has about two decades of experience in the media and advertising business.

Prior to Sequoia Capital, he was Media Director, South Asia, at Hindustan Unilever Limited. He has also served as Country Media Manager at Colgate Palmolive and Business Director at GroupM.

Bhavana Mittal
Vice-President, Media and Digital, RPSG Group

Bhavana Mittal

Mittal has spent more than 20 years shaping brands such as Dettol, Durex, Horlicks, Sensodyne Hyundai, Samsung, etc., during her previous jobs and today is responsible for brands like Too Yumm!, Spencers, Saregama Carvaan with RPSG Group. A media professional with a deep understanding of consumers, she has what it takes to gain consumer mindshare.

She started her professional journey with Saatchi and Saatchi, launching Hyundai Santro and Accent in India. This was followed by stints in Universal McCann, GroupM, Lintas and Cheil. From advertising, she moved over to Media Auditing, helping Accenture set up and establish its offering in India in 2007. Her next two stints were at GSK Consumer and RB.

She is a part of multiple media and marketing platforms and visits various management campuses to interact with budding managers to understand millennials as well as provide them with support and guidance. When she finds time from all of these, she teaches yoga in her capacity as a certified trainer.

Jaikishin Chhaproo
Head Media and PR at ITC

Jaikishin Chhaproo

Chhaproo is an astute mar-com professional with 20+ years of experience — panning FMCG, Telecom, Broadcast, E-commerce in India and Middle-East markets. Previously, he has handled media requirements at Nokia MENA, Hindustan Unilever, Snapdeal, Godrej and Wipro. Chhaproo has also headed marketing for Star Middle-East (a NewsCorp company). Before that, he has headed Strategy and Research for MCCS (ABP News, Ananda, Majha - erstwhile Star News, Ananda and Majha).

Krishnarao S Buddha
Senior Category Head, Parle Products

Krishnarao S Buddha

Buddha has over 25 years of experience in the FMCG sector in leading companies such as Parle Products, Uncle Chipps, Maxwell Apparels and Excelcia Foods. Over the years, Buddha has grown to become one of the key opinion leaders within the industry on several aspects such as business strategy, branding, marketing, advertising, distribution, manufacturing and sales to name a few.

In his present role, Buddha is responsible for Parle’s entire snacks, confectionery, cakes and rusk portfolio. He is the man behind the entry of Parle into the snacking category with a portfolio comprising brands of Parle’s Wafers, Chatkeens, FullToss and Mexitos.

A strong believer in work-life balance, Krishnarao enjoys playing word games, reading, watching Bollywood movies and listening to retro music during leisure hours. 

Maithreyi Jagannathan
Vice-President, Brand and Brand Function Leader, Personal Health Care AMA, P&G

Maithreyi Jagannathan

Jagannathan is a highly accomplished marketer with over 15+ years of brand-building experience in Procter and Gamble. She has led successful brands like Vicks, Metamucil, Pantene, Olay and Clairol across different geographies, including Asia, North America, ANZ and Africa. She has led the multiple Cannes-winning campaign, ‘Touch of Care’, on Vicks, which changed the growth of the brand in this region.

She is also passionate about giving back to society and leads the P&G skill-based volunteering CSR programme, which has trained over 200+ NGOs/social organisations in the last few years. 

Raj Nayak
Founder and Managing Director, House of Cheer Networks

Raj Nayak

A well-known name in the Indian media and entertainment industry, Nayak is a visionary leader, media maverick, growth spinner, trendsetter and a motivational powerhouse.

In his illustrious career spanning over three decades, he has led some of the largest media conglomerates in the country. Nayak was a founding member of the Star India team in 1993, where he spent almost 10 years to grow into the role of Executive Vice-President and be part of the Managing Committee. He then moved on to launch the NDTV News Network, redefining how news was consumed in the country.

Before setting up House of Cheer, he was the Chief Operating Officer, Viacom 18 Media Pvt Ltd, where he steered the company to great heights. His unique prowess to pioneer new concepts and mentor people make him one of the most respected professionals in the industry.

An advocate of happiness, Nayak derives his energy from people across all walks of life and believes in the strength of diversity.

Rajiv Dubey
Head of Media, Dabur India

Rajiv Dubey

Dubey is Head of Media of Dabur India Limited and has been at the helm for over 20 years. Dubey has managed and helped build many successful brands such as Real, Chyawanprash and Amla Hair Oil. The pandemic year has been phenomenal in terms of working digitally and has seen success in collaborative working during the pandemic.

Dubey is optimistic that India will come out of the pandemic’s second wave very soon and will set a benchmark in vaccination across the globe. The year 2021 will bring massive growth for all brands and bring business back to normal, he feels.

Shashank Srivastava
Executive Director, Maruti Suzuki

Shashank Srivastava

In his current role, Shashank Srivastava is responsible for the Marketing and Sales vertical of India’s largest carmaker and is in charge of both Brand Marketing-related activities as well as Retails Channel management.

He is an Electronics Engineer and a post-graduate from Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

Srivastava joined Maruti Suzuki as a Management trainee almost 30 years ago and has been through various functions such as Corporate Planning, Marketing, Advertising, Logistics, Field Sales, Dealer Development, Institutional Sales, Sales Planning and International Marketing.

He has been instrumental in taking various initiatives in the fast-changing Automobile scenario and has played a key role in transforming the M&S area at Maruti Suzuki over the years, including the current thrust for greater digitisation.

His interests include travelling, chess and reading.

Niraj Sharma

Welcoming the jury members on board, Niraj Sharma, Editor-in-Chief, BestMediaInfo and BuzzInContent, said, “Awards are as good as judges and the biggest names in the business on the jury panel will make the Rising Star Awards special. We wish the young professionals in media strategy good luck as winning a trophy judged by media strategy leaders will be an unmatched achievement for them. It is time for them to change gears and take the centre stage.”


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