New Delhi: Initiative Media, the media agency owned by IPG Mediabrands, on Friday announced that it has elevated Vaishali Verma as chief executive officer, effective immediately. She will oversee the India operations and report to Shashi Sinha, chief executive, IPG Mediabrands India.

Verma has been associated with IPG Mediabrands for over a decade serving as Initiative Media’s chief operating officer since 2014. In the previous role, she was overseeing the agency’s entire business in southern India with accounts like Amazon Seller Service, MRF Tyres and inner wear brand Jockey, leading a team of over 100 people.

“What makes this truly special is that Vaishali is an insider and has grown from strength to strength in the Group. I am hugely proud to have such superlative talent from within steering the ship. She embodies IPG’s culture and values and is an inspiring leader. I couldn’t have found a better person to lead Initiative Media," said Sinha in a statement.

With over 22 years of experience in the area of media, advertising and marketing, Verma has been a strong force in helping brands connect better with consumers. A MICA alumnus, she started her career in advertising as a media planner with Mudra Communications in 1995 charting the media strategies of companies like McDonald’s, Samsung and Nestle before joining Universal McCann. Verma joined IPG Mediabrands owned agency Lodestar UM in 2006 working on wide variety of clients like General Motors, Reckitt Benckiser, Gillette, Madura Garments and Wipro Consumer Care among others.

Noting that it has never been more difficult than now to get consumer attention, Verma said Initiative Media uses culture as the bridge to stay relevant. “We help brands grow through culture by distributing ideas, content and conversation. I think we have an opportunity to help shape the future of how brands engage with consumers. To be a part of this opportunity, to shape it with some of the sharpest minds in the business, is what excites me," she added.

Initiative is a 250-people strong agency with offices in seven cities across India. Its major clients include consumer goods firm Reckitt Benckiser, e-commerce platform Amazon, ketchup brand Heinz, Bajaj Auto, smartphone maker Gionee, Samsonite owned luggage brand American Tourister, and packaged food brand Too Yumm among others.