Keki Dadiseth new Sony India chairman


July 28, 2009

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[Hat tip Percy Kavarana]

Sony India announced the appointment of Keki B Dadiseth – former director of the world’s largest FMCG conglomerate Unilever and former chairman of its domestic arm, Hindustan Unilever (formerly HLL) – as its chairman on Thursday. Dadiseth has also been appointed as senior advisor to the group in India with immediate effect.

In this role, Dadiseth will provide leadership to further enhance Sony’s presence in the country and give strategic advice and support to the group in India as senior advisor, says a company statement. In particular, he will work with Sony’s broad range of businesses in India, from electronics to entertainment, to further enhance cross-company initiatives, new business development, external relations and strength of the Sony brand.


"India is a critically important market for us as we move to transform Sony into a fully integrated, agile and more innovative global company," said Howard Stringer, chairman, CEO and president, Sony Corporation. "With his extensive international experience and his strong ties across industries in India, Keki will play a vital role in furthering Sony group initiatives both in India and on a global level. His experience will be invaluable to us as we rapidly implement our strategic direction".

Though a player in the consumer electronics segment, Sony trails behind Korean giants Samsung and LG in ond of the major categories – television. Prior to his appointment with Sony, Dadiseth spent over 30 years at Unilever and its group companies where he held senior executive positions in finance and general management until he retired from Unilever’s corporate board in 2005.

After taking over the baton from former chairman SM Datta, Dadiseth embarked on some major mergers and acquisitions that propelled the company to a high growth trajectory. Faced with the problem of the company’s slow growth, Dadiseth had launched project millennium in the late 1990s to revamp the brands, decide the future focus of the company and ways to maintain market share.

He has been credited with the massive restructuring in HLL aimed at transforming the company, charting out new growth opportunities, retaining talent and making it the fastest growing consumer goods company. When Dadiseth took over as chairman in 1996, the group’s turnover in India was over Rs 5,000 crore. He fuelled the growth of the company to catapult its gross turnover to over Rs 10,000 crore in 1998. During his tenure as chairman – which saw the company face some challenging times like the infamous insider trading issue – HLL emerged as the country’s fastest growing consumer goods company.

Dadiseth is associated with various industries. As part of the new assignment, he will report to Stringer, and be based in Mumbai.

Original article here.