Genesis Burson-Marsteller announces new leadership appointments

Agency has promoted five execs to new senior positions, with two new directors taking control of the growing technology department

Genesis Burson-Marsteller has promoted five executives to senior leadership roles, effective from 1 January.

Nikhil Dey president of PR at the agency, has expanded his role to include public affairs. Dey joined Genesis BM in 2004, and he will continue to oversee the firm’s client growth strategy.

Atul Sharma will become the agency’s COO and a member of the India management team.

With more than 12 years at Genesis BM, Sharma will look to strengthen the firm’s operational capabilities. He will also continue in his role as India chair of the technology and telecoms practice.

Sanjay Arora (pictured) will takeover as India chair of the corporate and financial practice. He is replacing Vandana Sandhir, who is moving to a new role within the WPP network.

Arora will be responsible for building Genesis BM’s financial and corporate group, having led campaigns for several Fortune 500 clients.

Ajit Sahi, who joined the firm last year as director of thought leadership, is also taking on the mandate of public affairs.

A former journalist with three decades’ experience, Sahi has expertise in Indian and international politics, and will advise clients on the country’s developing regulatory and compliance landscape.

In addition, Genesis BM’s telecom and technology practice will have two new leaders overseeing the group’s b-to-c and b-to-b domains.

Piyal Banerjee (pictured) will be managing director focusing on the b-to-c practice. She brings more than 12 years’ experience in brand comms across India, China, Malaysia and Singapore.

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Behind the scenes of Genesis Burson-Marsteller's newsroom in India

She will also be business leader of Step Up, a Genesis BM platform offering creative comms services to start-ups, and will continue to co-lead the corporate and financial practice for the West India region.

Shivaram Lakshminarayan, will be head of the b-to-b side of the telecom and technology practice. He has been with Genesis BM for more than a decade and previously served as technology lead for the firm’s southern Indian markets.

Lakshminarayan (pictured) will also take over as director of the corporate and financial practice for the South Indian region, working closely with Arora.

Prema Sagar, founder of Genesis and vice chair of Burson-Marsteller Asia-Pacific, said: "As the year draws to a close, I am happy about the great leaps we have taken in 2015 and excited about the opportunities that lie ahead.

"To support the continuing growth of our firm in 2016, we are promoting our talented and experienced leaders who have demonstrated that they make a difference to our clients business. I am confident that these leaders will further strengthen our India leadership team."

Dey said: "Atul has been a trusted advisor to our clients across sectors and his proven expertise is a great asset for us. Sanjay, Shivaram and Piyal have consistently demonstrated strong leadership skills and clear vision for their clients and team. In their new roles, they will continue their contribution to the firm.

"We will certainly miss Vandana and wish her well as she moves onto a new chapter in her life." 

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