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Shobiz Havas launches new brand identity and logo

The experiential communication agency of Havas Group India has completed 40 years in India

Shobiz, the experiential communication agency of Havas Group India, has completed 40 years in India. Founded in 1982, the Mumbai-headquartered Shobiz has four offices and over 250+ professionals across India.

To commemorate this historic milestone, Havas Group India and Shobiz have launched a new brand identity, a new logo – Shobiz Havas – to display the company’s integration with the French network. In addition, Shobiz has also launched a 40-year celebratory logo to mark the occasion. In 2019, following Shobiz’s acquisition by the Havas Group India, the agency became a critical strategic pillar in the growth of the network in the country. 

Founded by Rehmatali Tobaccowala, whose early days were focused solely on the wedding business. As years passed, Tobaccowala’s business gradually expanded by foraying into newer avenues including staging, live events, product launches, theatre productions and more. The relations that Rehmatali established went a long way in spreading the word about his work, as he went about his business stage setups for some of India’s biggest industrialists including the Mahindras & Ambanis, theatre production for the likes of Alyque Padamsee, Hosi Vasunia Productions, Ronnie Screwvala Productions, Borjor Patel Productions, and events including the Filmfare and Femina Miss India. 

Sameer Tobaccowala

When Rehmatali’s son Sameer Tobaccowala, the current CEO, joined Shobiz in 1990 he brought in a fresh zest and energy to the business and diversified it further to meet the needs of the market. Sameer spearheaded the digital influx and spread its wings globally with behemoths like Oracle and SAP. It was Shobiz that relaunched Coca-Cola in India in 1993 after a gap of 16 years. Not to forget the agency's work for Liril and Mahindra Ford. 

In the 90s, Shobiz underwent its first big transformation as it moved from being a stage management company to an event management company and expanded to Bangalore and Delhi. Some of the launches by Shobiz of this era included Tata IBM, Coco-Cola, Fiat, Opel Astra, Mahindra Ford Escort, Mercedes E-class, and several others. Shobiz played a pivotal role in the launch of India’s first indigenously produced car, the Tata Indica. In 2000, the Indian IT sector was booming, and new investments were pouring through to resolve the Y2K problem. Shobiz was one of the first ones to create a website in India through which it lapped up the massive Oracle client. The agency executed one event, following which Oracle handed over a mega 14-city event across the Middle East, Africa, and Southeast Asia. This led to new clients like IBM, SAP, Sun Microsystems etc. 

By the time it was 2010, social media had already taken centre stage. AR/VR soon followed rather than just displaying a product like a car or a phone, elements of gaming were being introduced for the audience to get involved with brands. In addition to the IT clients, Shobiz won clients like One Plus, Vivo and others. 

However, the biggest transition took place in 2020, after the world was hit by the pandemic, and businesses came to a grinding halt. The agency quickly moved towards building a holistic, and strong hybrid model, with best-in-class experiential offerings, both online and offline. The agency launched Shobiz Digital, built an in-house studio, and delivered over 500+ events in the virtual world through 2020 and 2021. As marketers are back on the ground, the virtual offering of Shobiz has now become a separate profitable venture for the agency. 

The agency is also lauded for its long-standing client relationships in India. This includes HUL, Tata, Ford, SAP, VMWare, Mercedes, HPE. Today, the agency works across sectors, such as IT, Automotive, FMCG, Corporate, BFSI, Healthcare and Media, with over 150 recurring clients.

Rana Barua

Rana Barua, Group CEO, Havas Group India, said, “I want to congratulate Sameer and the entire team at Shobiz Havas for achieving this tremendous milestone. Over the last four decades, Shobiz has gone through several transformations, but the one over the last two years was perhaps the biggest in the history of the company and reflects in the business growth of the company despite the market challenges. Very soon, the company will venture into newer functions and partner many of our group companies to offer a meaningful and seamless brand journey to clients.” 

Sameer Tobaccowala, CEO, Shobiz Experiential Communications, said, “The legacy of Shobiz in the field of experiential is unmatched. The brands that we built over the last 4 decades and the long-standing client relationships that we cherish are a testimony of this legacy. I take this opportunity to thank everyone who associated with us over the years. A huge thanks to Havas Group global and Rana Barua, Group CEO, Havas Group India, who stood by us when we were at our lowest. I also want to thank my team for their unwavering support. Lastly, we wouldn’t have been here without the business acumen of my father Rehmatali Tobaccowala, who taught us to never say never, always be open to learn and do it all with impeccable humane touch and a sense of joy.”

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