‘SAN­JIT LEAVES BE­HIND AN IN­CRED­I­BLE LEGACY’

San­jit Shas­tri, CEO of Publi­cis Bee­hive, passed away on Septem­ber 21

Impact - - THE WEEK THAT WAS -

The ad­ver­tis­ing in­dus­try lost a vet­eran and a tal­ented en­tre­pre­neur with the sud­den demise of San­jit Shas­tri, CEO of Publi­cis Bee­hive last week. Shas­tri had been to Lon­don, and had re­turned to Mum­bai on Wed­nes­day. He suf­fered a mas­sive car­diac ar­rest at his home and passed away early on the morn­ing of Thurs­day, Septem­ber 21. He was only 53 years old. Shas­tri had set up Bee­hive Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, a full-ser­vice in­te­grated ser­vice agency, in 2003. Ser­vices of­fered by the agency in­cluded cre­ative, rep­u­ta­tion man­age­ment, me­dia, dig­i­tal, brand ac­ti­va­tion and re­search. Shas­tri was the agency’s CEO since in­cep­tion, and con­tin­ued in the same ca­pac­ity even af­ter its takeover by the Publi­cis Groupe in 2013. Be­fore Bee­hive, Shas­tri was the Pres­i­dent at Con­cept Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, help­ing the busi­ness soar un­der his lead­er­ship. At the time of Bee­hive’s ac­qui­si­tion, Nakul Cho­pra, then CEO, South Asia, Publi­cis World­wide, had said, “Bee­hive brings both scale and strate­gic value to the Publi­cis of­fer­ing in In­dia. I look for­ward to part­ner­ing with San­jit and his team to build a stronger Publi­cis.” Cho­pra shared a close friend­ship with Shas­tri and the two of them were known to sit to­gether and have lunch ev­ery day. Cho­pra was in shock on learn­ing about Shas­tri’s demise. Mourn­ing Shas­tri’s demise, Sau­rabh Varma, Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer at Publi­cis Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, In­dia, said, “Publi­cis Bee­hive was San­jit’s life’s work. He leaves be­hind an in­cred­i­ble legacy. Publi­cis Bee­hive is ar­guably the finest in­te­grated agency serv­ing In­dian en­trepreneurs. We will miss his pas­sion, his in­cred­i­ble fo­cus, and his be­lief in al­ways be­ing client-cen­tric.” Col­leagues and em­ploy­ees across Publi­cis Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and Publi­cis Bee­hive fondly re­mem­ber Shas­tri for his un­par­al­leled pas­sion and drive for growth. He was a men­tor to most and the source of ex­treme pos­i­tiv­ity to sev­eral oth­ers. In his ca­reer, he helped build sev­eral iconic brands in In­dia in­clud­ing Malaysia Tourism, Star Cruises, FabIn­dia, Rum­myCir­cle.com, among oth­ers. Ex­press­ing her grief, Shya­mashree D’Mello, Ex­ec­u­tive Cre­ative Di­rec­tor at Publi­cis Bee­hive and a close col­league of Shas­tri’s for the last 15 years said, “I re­mem­ber San­jit as some­one with in­fec­tious pas­sion and an al­most sur­real thirst for knowl­edge. There was a lot to learn from him – as a men­tor, col­league, friend and a boss, not just for me but for ev­ery­one who had the good for­tune to know him. I can’t ex­press my loss in words, but I do know that there will never be any­one like him.” Shas­tri is sur­vived by his wife and daugh­ter.

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