Consumer PR Lead, APAC | Head of Communications, LinkedIn India
Deepa Sapatnekar is the Consumer PR Lead, APAC for LinkedIn where she is tasked with building the brand through a sustained media and stakeholder engagement program across print, television and the online space. Beyond this, she also conducts an ongoing LinkedIn familiarisation program for journalists and oversees LinkedIn India’s Twitter program which is aimed at educating consumers.
Deepa’s professional career expanses over a decade with experience across fashion, shipping, and IT industries before joining LinkedIn India. She has been a Business Analyst with Indoglobal Group of Companies and a Corporate Communications Consultant at HSBC Global Technology. Moving on to leadership roles, she headed Marketing Communications at Compulink Systems Limited and also at Network Solutions, an IBM Company.
Passionate about volunteering, Deepa is on the board of LinkedIn for Good Foundation and chairs Communications for the board. She also heads the regional efforts for ‘Women at LinkedIn’ in APAC.
Deepa is a Brihan Maharashtra College of Commerce (BMCC) alumnus and has a Masters in Computer Management from the University of Pune.
CEO, The Hoffman Agency
Lou Hoffman is the CEO of The Hoffman Agency. Lou and his wife Heather launched the consultancy in 1987, expanding from Silicon Valley into a global player with offices in Asia and Europe as well as the U.S. Starting with a focus on the tech sector, the firm’s work today cuts across both consumer and B2B markets with clients ranging from Nokia to the French government. An advocate of the communications profession, Lou writes on areas that touch the broad communications sphere — storytelling, branding, digital, paid media, journalism, etc. — at www.IshmaelsCorner.com. He’s also a monthly columnist at Reputation Today.
Head, Corporate Brand Management & Communications,
Larsen & Toubro Limited
Manish Kalghatgi is a communications professional with 27 years of experience spanning media and corporate communications. After a stint in journalism at the beginning of his career, Manish made a shift to the world of communications and reputation management.
He has worked with PR consultancies and with multinational and India corporates across diverse sectors such as automobiles, aviation and infrastructure.
Over the years Manish has handled a wide variety of communication-led programmes and campaigns and has substantial hands-on experience of corporate brand building, financial communication, leadership profiling, crisis management, internal communication and corporate social responsibility.
Director, Corporate & Government Affairs
India and Southeast Asia,
Ophira Bhatia is Director, Corporate & Government Affairs, India and Southeast Asia, Mondelēz International. Ophira is responsible for the company’s corporate reputation programme, internal communications, community initiatives, corporate PR and issues management in India and nine South East Asia markets including Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong.
With over 20 years of corporate affairs experience, Ophira has consulted and partnered with a range of both Indian and multinational companies across sectors. She has been involved in work around corporate reputation management and planning, crisis management, corporate positioning, communication skills training, product launches, branding, market entry, financial communications, social engagement programs, and employee strategies.
Prior to Mondelēz International, Ophira was Director – Mumbai at Edelman India, the world’s largest independent public relations firm, and was responsible for the company’s business growth and development.
Vice President, Corporate Communications, ReNew Power
Pradeep Wadhwa is a seasoned Public Relations leader with more than two decades of experience in building and protecting Corporate Reputation of leading corporates across a variety of industry verticals. He has been on both sides of the table – in leadership roles in Corporate Communications as well as counselling clients at leading Public Relations consultancy firms.
In his decade-long association with leading reputation consultancy firms such as Weber Shandwick, Genesis and Perfect Relations, he acquired a width of experience across Corporate Reputation Management, Business Development, Crisis/Issues Management, Public Policy Advocacy, B2B PR, Brand Communications and Media Relations, working as an advisor, for both global companies and Indian business groups. He has worked for and counselled clients in the Automobile, Consumer Products, Technology, Infrastructure (including Power and Telecom sectors), Healthcare, Financial Services, Fashion and Social sectors.
Since April 2017, he is working as Vice President Corporate Communications, ReNew Power – one of India’s leading Renewable Energy companies and is responsible for external communications, internal communications and the ReNew brand. His most recent assignment before joining ReNew Power was with PepsiCo where he worked as a Corporate Communications Director for more than seven years.
Pradeep completed his Masters in Physics from Hansraj College, Delhi University, and also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Management, from Birla Institute of Management Technology, Greater Noida.
Director Corporate Communications & CSR, South Asia
Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont™
Purnima Sahni Mohanty leads corporate communications and CSR for Corteva Agriscience™, the agriculture division of DowDuPont™. She has been with DuPont, a pioneering science and innovation company, since January 2015. With over 25 years of industry experience, Purnima has in-depth expertise in reputation management and corporate citizenship. She has worked in strategic communications roles with leading global brands like Saatchi & Saatchi, Oracle, General Electric, Samsung and Alcatel. Purnima has in-depth experience in founding and managing women’s leadership programs and is a mentor to several aspiring young women.
Vice President, Communications & Government Affairs
GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Ransom D-Souza heads the Corporate Communications, Government Affairs, Corporate Social Responsibility & Investor Relations function at GlaxoSmithKline. He is a member of the management team and the spokesperson for GSK Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
Prior to GSK, Ransom has worked with Johnson & Johnson Ltd, Godrej Group, Cadbury India Ltd & Pfizer Ltd.
VP & Head – Corporate Communications
Vistara, TATA SIA Airlines Ltd.
A Stanford Certified Project Manager, Rashmi has over 21 years of experience working in leadership roles with top multinational technology brands leading strategic communications, media stakeholder engagement, employee ambassadorship, brand management, marketing communication, investor relations, digital media, sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility. During her stint with Hughes Software Systems (now Aricent), Adobe, Ericsson and Tata Docomo, she has managed large scale collaborative projects working with local and global teams receiving acclaims.
Currently as VP & Head of Corporate Communications with Vistara – TATA SIA Airlines Ltd, Rashmi is part of the launch team. She is responsible for formulating and executing the airline’s ambitious PR, communications, stakeholder engagement and sustainability strategy to garner a holistic mindshare for the brand.
VP – Marketing and Communications at Ericsson
Director – Corporate Communications & External Affairs,
Discovery Communications India
Sameer Bajaj has close to 20 years of extensive and diverse experience covering public relations, marketing and promotions, internal communication, strategic planning and crisis management. Currently, he leads Corporate Communications and Corporate Affairs functions for Discovery Communications India. Prior to Discovery, Sameer has led Corporate Communications at leading organisations including ESPN STAR Sports and Amway India.
Heads PR & Communications
India and APAC, Infosys
Sarah Gideon heads the PR and Corporate Communications function at Infosys in India and manages the governance of the function globally. She has been with the company since 2008 and has been part of the organisation’s journey over the past decade where she has played an integral role in shaping the function’s priorities and structure.
With an experience of over 15 years, Sarah has managed the communications mandate for large consumer and enterprise brands, including Intel, Google and Canon, in addition to Infosys.
She has extensive experience conceptualising strategic communication programs across corporate themes, technology, financial communication, CSR and crisis communication, working with cross- functional teams and senior leaders from the Infosys management team and Board.
She is part of the Infosys Global Marketing Leadership Team and has been recognised for her performance and contribution to the company through several Infosys awards.
AGM & Head, Corporate Communication and PR
Schneider Electric, India
Seema is a Public Relations professional who is currently Head of Corporate Communication and Public Relations, for Schneider Electric in India. In her previous roles, she has lead the PR and Corporate Communication function at Dassault Systemes India prior to which she was part of Brand and Communications team at PwC India. She is also a visiting faculty at the Mass Communication Research Center (MCRC) at Jamia Millia Islamia University, Delhi.
Seema has a Master’s degree in Applied Communication from Coventry University UK. Following the degree she worked in the London, in Social Care, for about 2 years before moving back to India. Seema has previously also taught in the Aligarh Muslim University in the Department of English, at the beginning of her professional career.
Seema comes from the city of Lucknow and lives and works in Delhi.
Vice President & Head, Corporate Communications & Media Relations, Aptech Ltd
Shrutidhar Paliwal heads Corporate Communications & Media Relations for Aptech Ltd, which is a global leader in learning & training solutions. The company is spread across 43 countries & has eight sector leading brands & a vibrant enterprise business. Designated as Vice President, Shrutidhar is a senior corporate communication & branding professional with over 20 years of strong multi geography, multi sector experience. In his current role at Aptech Ltd, he is responsible for creating a strategic vision and thought leadership for the brand, management & development of all communication plans globally.
He specializes in developing communication strategies, brand building, management of multi-layered brands across different geographies, planning and execution of launches.
Shrutidhar is on the Board of Design Matters Foundation, an organisation that lays emphasis on design thinking for children. He is also on the Academic Council of SCoRE (School of Communication & Reputation), Advisor to a Training Startup called V Inspire, Advisor at RONKEL Media Education & Research Institute-a centre for Media studies & film school. He is also a member of CII Western Region Education Core Committee and a key player that runs the popular contest CII-THE INDIA WE WANT.
He has recently edited a fiction “Take me Home, To Love” and has produced a web series for controlled/private consumption called Zindagi Unlimited-Kuch Unkahi, Kuch Ansuni.
Head of Corporate Affairs, Asia Pacific, Thomson Reuters
Shweta Munjal oversees the pan-Asia external and internal strategies and initiatives from Thomson Reuters. Her focus is to lead and champion the communication function and help strengthen, protect and nurture corporate reputation for APAC region.
Shweta’s role comprises of advising the leadership team and senior executives on all facets of communications, including employee engagement, public relations, CSR and crisis and issues management. She also works towards shaping and driving a coherent narrative for Thomson Reuters across businesses.
A seasoned professional, Shweta has managed Corporate Communications and CSR for Mondelez International (formerly known as Cadbury India), Intuit, Yahoo! and NASSCOM.
Vice President, Corporate Relations
India & Bangladesh, Sembcorp
Sourav Das is the Vice President, Corporate Relations at Sembcorp, leading the Corporate Communication functions in India & Bangladesh. Sembcorp is a Temasek-owned Singaporean-listed utility that develops, builds, owns and operates thermal power plants, renewables, water treatment plants and multi-utilities. Sembcorp is one of India’s largest foreign investors in the power sector so far.
Before joining Sembcorp, Sourav was with Cairn India (Vedanta Group Company) a leading Oil and Gas company in the Indian subcontinent. Sourav has more than two decades of experience in the field of communications and reputation building. This includes considerable work experience in both consultancy and corporate environment.
Sourav’s experience spans across internal and external communications. He has handled one of India’s biggest IPO (USD 6 billion) and managed communication during M&As. His working experience spans across India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Singapore and in select African markets.
Head – PR & Corporate Communications
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) India
Co-founder & Managing Partner, Mojo PR
Tara Rogers is the co-founder and managing partner of Mojo PR, an independent and award-winning communications firm she established, together with her business partner Louise Mezzina, in the Middle East in 2009.
Tara is a marketing and communications veteran with a 25+ year track record in the Middle East, UK and South Africa, and has held a number of leadership positions in the industry prior to establishing Mojo PR. These include General Manager for both Fortune Promoseven PR and Weber Shandwick in the Middle East, Marketing & PR Manager for Dubai Duty Free, Head of Marketing for Bradshaw Taylor UK, and PR Director for the MBC Group.
Tara’s passion for nurturing, developing and supporting young talent throughout her career led to her being awarded the Middle East PR Association’s Visionary Award in 2015, and regularly earns her international speaking opportunities on the subject.
She is a Board Member of non-profit organisation REACH, an initiative to mentor women professionals and develop female leadership in the Middle East.
As a certified coach, Tara also helps men and women C-suite executives across the MENA region develop their potential.
Vice President, Public Affairs & Communications, India and Area Countries
American Express Company
Vibha Bajaj is Vice President, Public Affairs & Communications, India and Area Countries at American Express Company and is responsible for developing and implementing the public affairs strategy for American Express India & Area Countries. Vibha is a seasoned communications professional with 20+ years association with a global Fortune 500 company. She has been instrumental in designing and managing several campaigns directed at brand-building and reinforcing leadership among relevant stakeholders. Over the years, she has amassed deep knowledge of areas such as media relations, reputation management, public affairs, crisis management, financial communications, marketing strategy and internal communications. At American Express, Vibha has sucessfully led several communication initiatives and constantly interfaced with diverse audience, including corporate bodies, government, and media representatives, and key decision makers. Her contributions have been recognised through awards such as, the ‘Global Corporate Affairs & Communications’ (CA&C) Annual Award for Excellence’, the highest internal award for consistent excellence, and the ‘Global Financial Services Star Award’ for successfully promoting and implementing the company’s global strategy.
In her current role, she also leads employee communication and executive communication for the Global Services Group of American Express in Asia Pacific.
Vice President – Corporate Communications
Housing.com, PropTiger.com and Makaan.com
At the helm of Corporate Communications at Housing.com, PropTiger.com and Makaan.com, Zeenat works closely with the CEO and leadership team overseeing the company’s external and internal communication strategy. Zeenat’s meticulousness, keen eye for detail and thorough understanding of the business has led Housing.com to successfully achieve its communication goals. Zeenat received ‘Certificate of Excellence’ at the 2016 edition of SABRE Awards South Asia – the region’s premier PR awards for ‘Superior Work in Reputation Management’ for the company. She recently bagged ‘Certificate of Achievement’ at Fulcrum Awards 2016 under the category ‘Issue & Crisis Management’ for showcasing exemplary communication work.
With over 20 years of experience, Zeenat is an industry veteran having led successful campaigns across industries, including corporate, consumer goods, lifestyle, hospitality, tourism, media and entertainment. Under her guidance, the corporate communications team has driven strategic plans to ensure crisis is managed efficiently without affecting the brand’s reputation. Prior to joining Housing.com, Zeenat led the communications strategy for Apollo Hospitals, NDTV Imagine and Star India, where she played a pivotal role in defining and differentiating the communications strategy for brands in a highly competitive market like India.
Zeenat started her career with an event management company Showbiz and has worked with leading consultancies like Clea PR, Genesis Public Relations (now Genesis Burson-Marsteller) and LinOpinion. Having effectively managed over fifty brands during her consultancy tenure, Zeenat believes in a result-oriented approach and has a proven track record of outperforming campaigns.