New Delhi: Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd CEO Pradeep Guha has quit the firm with effect from Thursday. Punit Goenka, network operating officer and a member of the board of directors, will take over as CEO. Guha joined Zee in January 2005, prior to which he worked with Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd for nearly three decades.
“It has been wonderful working with Mr Guha for the past three-and-a-half years. We have been discussing this for a while as he wanted to move on to explore entrepreneurial options. I have learnt a lot from him and we wish him the very best in whatever he decides to do,” Goenka said.
On Tuesday evening, however, there was some confusion over whether Guha was free to join a competitor. While Goenka said Guha’s contract involved a six-month no-compete clause, which means the latter could not join a direct competitor during that period, Guha denied this. “There is no no-compete clause,” Guha said. He added that he was weighing his options and would firm up his plans in two weeks. “Whatever I do will have some degree of an entrepreneurial element,” he said.
Guha’s professional movements are keenly watched as he is counted among the most influential executives in Mumbai’s media industry. Guha’s departure from Zee has been speculated for more than five months now. The buzz intensified on Tuesday when he floated an outdoor entertainment division called Street Culture through The Culture Co., of which, he is the owner and promoter.