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NEW DELHI : Sudhanshu Vats, group chief executive officer and managing director of media and entertainment conglomerate Viacom18, a subsidiary of Network18, has decided to quit the company after a stint of eight years.

Rahul Joshi, managing director of the Network18 Group, will now be responsible for the verticals previously under Vats.

In his tenure, Vats has helped expand the media network’s footprint into new business lines of digital, experiential entertainment and consumer products, the company said in a statement. He has also strengthened Viacom18’s position in Hindi mass entertainment, regional, kids, music and English entertainment and made its filmed entertainment business known for content-led cinema such as Bhaagh Milkha Bhaag (2013), Queen (2014) and Andhadhun (2018), among others. Vats has also seen the company launch its video streaming service Voot, helping it establish a strong digital presence.

“Sudhanshu is a dynamic and admired leader in corporate India today. Not only has he led from the front in shaping up Viacom18’s growth story, he has also championed the cause of the sector at the various industry bodies that he has captained. While we are sad to lose him, it is equally reassuring to know that we have a strong second line that’s raring to go. I’d like to wish Sudhanshu all the very best for his future endeavours," Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman of the Board, Network18, said in a statement.

Vats has also served as vice-president at the Indian Broadcasting Foundation, chairman of the National Media and Entertainment Committee of CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) and chairman of BARC India.

Before Viacom18, he was with Hindustan Unilever as vice president, laundry, South Asia and global vice president.

“It has been an extremely challenging and satisfying eight years at the helm of Viacom18. I have had the privilege of working with some of the best minds in the media and entertainment industry to chart the growth story of Viacom18. We have together built one of the most admired media companies of brilliant storytellers with diversified presence across screens and platforms. As I look forward to taking up newer challenges, I shall always cherish the learnings in leading India’s youngest and fastest-growing media and entertainment company," Vats said in a statement.

He shall be serving at Viacom18 till 15 April 2020. The company statement did not disclose his future plans.

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