Group CEO, Viacom 18
Sudhanshu Vats is Group CEO, Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd., and responsible for all its lines of business – COLORS, Rishtey, Rishtey Cineplex, MTV, MTV Beats, Nickelodeon, Sonic, Nick Jr, Vh1, Comedy Central, COLORS Infinity, COLORS Kannada, COLORS Marathi, COLORS, Bangla, COLORS Oriya, COLORS Gujarati and COLORS Super in Broadcast Entertainment; Viacom18 Motion Pictures in Filmed Entertainment; LIVE Viacom18 and BE Viacom18 in Experiential Entertainment; VOOT in Digital Entertainment and Viacom18 Consumer Products. In the last four years, he has successfully steered the group into a profitable growth phase while expanding the channel network, driving content-led cinema, entering experiential entertainment through Live events across genres, opening up the Consumer Products business line and making the company future ready with Viacom18 Digital Ventures’ OTT platform VOOT. Under Sudhanshu’s leadership the group has grown from 6 to over 36 channels and opened up 3 more lines of business leading to a stupendous 40 X growth in topline.
A Hindustan Unilever (Unilever India) veteran, Sudhanshu Vats has spent about 20 years at the organization in different assignments. A Management Graduate from the Indian Institute of Management – Ahmedabad, he joined Hindustan Unilever Limited as a Management Trainee and worked with them in various Sales & Marketing and General Management roles across categories (Home & Personal Care, and Foods) and in all four regions in the country. During his tenure he has shaped many popular household brands, most notably Lipton, Vim, Wheel, Surf, Rin, Lifebuoy and Lux. He has also done a short term assignment on Modern Trade (Organized Retailing) in Thailand.
In his last assignment with Unilever as Vice President – Laundry, South Asia, he grew the South Asia Laundry business in strong double digits crossing the Euro 1 bn turnover milestone in 2011. In his earlier assignment as Vice President – Skin Cleansing and Laundry, and HHC, HUL India, he successfully led the Laundry and HHC categories doubling this large business segment in just four years.
During 2004-2005, Sudhanshu worked with BP in India for about 18 months as Vice President Marketing and was instrumental in the Castrol Master brand re-launch in 2005.
Sudhanshu leads industry thinking and brings fresh perspective to the Media & Entertainment sector. He is committed to the development and expansion of the sector in India. He is Chairman of the National Media and Entertainment Committee of CII (Confederation of Indian Industry), Vice President of IBF (Indian Broadcasting Foundation) and President on the Board of BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council).
He is an avid trekker and runs marathons regularly.