Star India’s Sanjay Gupta, Ajit Mohan on Facebook’s hiring radar: Report

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Facebook is in the process to hire a managing director for its India operations. Star India MD Sanjay Gupta and Hotstar Chief Executive Ajit Mohan are reportedly on the radar of the social media giant.

Facebook global marketing solutions vice-president David Fischer is in India, interviewing the candidates for the MD’s post at the vice-president level, Times of India has reported. Tata Sky MD Harit Nagpal and former Karnataka bureaucrat Srivatsa Krishna are reported to be in the shortlist, which also includes Viacom18 group CEO Sudhanshu Vats. The selected candidate will report to Fischer.

The new head for India operations, however, will not be in charge for Facebook-owned social media apps – WhatsApp and Instagram.

The KRAs for the Facebook India MD will include sales & marketing, partnerships, corporate and government engagement as well as defining strategic, financial and operating targets that align with the long-term strategic plan. A $2 million (Rs 13.5 crore) annual remuneration and stock options have attracted many top names for the post.

Neither Facebook nor the candidates have confirmed the ongoing hiring process. Nagpal and Vats though are reported to have denied the “speculation”.

Facebook is relying heavily on video content for its growth strategy.

The Menlo Park-based social media and networking company in the recent past has hired two major names from the sports broadcast industry – former Euro Sports CEO Peter Hutton to lead global sports rights deals, and ex-ESPN South Asia chief Joyee Biswas as Asia Pacific Sports Partnerships head.

The fact had surprised the sports broadcast industry with an extremely aggressive ₹ 3,900 crore bid for the Indian Premier League digital rights last year.

These developments are a testimony to Facebook’s heavy reliance on sports video content and India market.