SANJAY THAPAR - GROUP CEO
SAGAR MAHABALESHWARKAR - NATIONAL CREATIVE DIRECTOR
SOURABH MISHRA - GROUP CHIEF STRATEGY OFFICER
PRAVEEN VADHERA - DIVISION CEO FOR OOH
RAJESH GHATGE - DIVISION CEO FOR SERCON
ABEER CHAKRAVARTHY - KOLKATA OPERATIONS HEAD
SRIJIB MALIK - MUMBAI & DELHI OPERATIONS HEAD
VASANTHA KRISHNAMURTHY - BANGALORE OPERATIONS HEAD
MUKUND SHARMA - EXECUTIVE CREATIVE DIRECTOR
DEVESH DESAI - CREATIVE DIRECTOR, BANGALORE
Bates arrived in India in 1999, when it took over the troubled agency Clarion, and was called Bates Clarion for six months before being named Bates India.
At the APAC level, in 2003, WPP acquired Cordiant of which Bates was a part, and in 2005, Bates Asia acquired a majority stake in Mohammed Khan’s Enterprise, and the Indian unit took on a new name, Bates Enterprise. Soon after, rmg David, already part of the WPP network, became a part of it to make it Bates David Enterprise.
In 2007, Bates merged its activation arm in India, 141 Worldwide, with Sercon, a marketing services company it acquired. The merged company was known as 141 Sercon.
Soon after, the agency was renamed Bates 141. In October 2011, the ‘141’ suffix disappeared in India and it went back to being Bates India. Bates recently formed a joint venture with CHI, UK’s top independent agency that lives and breathes its spirit - ‘Big ideas for ambitious brands’. This partnership has given Bates and its clients access to a global network and creativity and the company is now called Bates Chi & Partners.
Going back in history, the parent agency was set up in 1940 by Ted Bates and achieved fame in large measure because of his flamboyant creative partner, Rosser Reeves, who came up with the concept of USP (Unique Selling Proposition).
The agency in India employs 300 people across three verticals. It has four offices in India and one in Dhaka.
The key practices include Advertising, Out-of-home solutions (including Outdoor, Retail, Shopper Marketing), Activation. The agency tries to improve delivery and ROI by measuring and analysing the impact of each activity. All these help it create and intelligently activate big and bold ideas.
The name combines as Bates, CHI, ‘& Partners’. It’s simple- Bates CHI & Partners, but if you see the construct it’s interesting. Bates is an Asia Network. CHI brings world class creativity and ability to create Big Ideas and the &Partners is the philosophy or bringing the best people around the table to crack the big idea - so it’s all about partnerships that give local relevance.
On the advertising front- Marico, ONGC, Delhi Police, Colgate, Tata AIA Life Insurance, Future Supply Chain, etc.
On the OOH front- ITC, Vodafone, Star India Pvt Ltd, Idea Cellular Ltd, Discovery Communications, Vodafone, etc.
On the Digital and Intelligent Activation team Sercon- Dell, VM Ware, Adobe, Oracle, Nokia, etc
RECENT BIG CAMPAIGNS
A few campaigns that have won accolades from the fraternity recently include Tang, the rebranding exercise for Tata AIA, Print and OOH work on Getty Images, TV campaign for Century Ply... A recent hit was the large integrated campaign ‘Cholbena’.
Outdoor Advertising Awards:
Gold medal – For outdoor media plan of the year for Vodafone; Gold medal- For Best Use of Technology- Star plus - Just Dance
Big Bang Awards:
Gold medal –For online campaign – Castrol Promotion Marketing
Awards of India:
Best Innovative Idea or Concept- Castrol
THE ESSENCE, ACCORDING TO SANJAY THAPAR
Q] What is the USP of Team Bates?
Bates India is about Bold Ideas, Intelligently Activated. We have the ability to not only think and create big ideas, but the depth to deliver and intelligently activate the same in the market, right to the last mile. We are more nimble than traditional networks, but more robust than a boutique. We think like
a boutique but have the depth and scale to deliver like any big network.
Q] How does the road ahead look like? What are the new frontiers the agency is looking at?
The partnership, our philosophy and capabilities, together with scale give us a unique advantage - that we are positioned between large traditional networks and creative boutiques. With our skills and services, the road ahead is simple: Continue to challenge status quo to think of big and bold ideas and then intelligently activate that to carry through all communication to the last mile.
Q] What is the one word that sums up the essence of Bates?
In the new avatar, what sums up Bates is the power of “&”. It’s about forging the right partnerships in order to create and execute big ideas.
Q] What is the fun element that employees enjoy here?
This will sound clichéd, but it is work hard, very hard. But then party harder. Much harder.