It has been close to 4 months since Kirthiga Reddy stepped down as Managing Director at Facebook India, pretty much attributed to the debacle Free Basics turned out to be. After more than a quarter of functioning without an MD, the social networking giant has finally found a successor to her in the form of former MD of Adobe South Asia and India, Umang Bedi.
An alumnus of Harvard Business School, Umang Bedi has an experience of over two decades in sales, marketing, and partnerships roles with various MNCs. He is acknowledged to have played a key role in building India as one of the major markets of Adobe.
On joining Facebook, Umang Bedi said,
I am thrilled to join Facebook and am looking forward to working with the talented teams in India to help brands and agencies grow their business on our platform. For me it’s a promising opportunity to participate in India’s digital growth, and I can’t think of a better place to be at.
At Facebook, Bedi will be responsible for building and maintaining strategic relationships with top clients and regional agencies in India.
In an announcement, Dan Neary, Vice President, Asia Pacific, Facebook said,
India is known for its great talent pool and we are really pleased to have Umang Bedi, a proven business executive to lead our business in India. I also want to wish Kirthiga the very best in her new global role.”
He further added that Reddy played an important role in setting Facebook business from the scratch in India. It is noteworthy that Facebook has already denied that the resignation of Reddy was not an after-effect of Free Basics failure.
Reddy will join Global Accounts team of Facebook which manages relationships with global advertisers. She will lead the global efforts of the team in emerging markets in addition to managing a set of global brands.
On leaving Facebook India and taking a new role, Reddy said,
After six years in India building our operations and business, it’s hard to leave a team I now call family. The good news is that we will continue to work together. As I look ahead, I am excited about how well positioned our business is, to grow from strength to strength with Umang’s leadership, and with my next opportunity to shape and drive our emerging markets strategy across some of the world’s biggest brands.
Facebook also revealed that they have close to 150 million daily users in India and the company was working with 85% of the top 100 advertisers in the country who were using its advertising platform.
We see significant opportunities to help Indian business—large and small—deliver against their business objectives in the mobile world,
said Neary in his note.
Umang Bedi will join Facebook India in July 2016 whereas Reddy will return to the US to join in August for her new role at the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California.