With a tricky regulatory regime to navigate, Facebook Inc announced the appointment of Ajit Mohan, the current chief executive officer of Star India’s video streaming platform Hotstar, as the managing director and vice-president of Facebook India.
A former consultant at McKinsey & Co, Mohan played an important role in Star India’s foray into video streaming when Star Sports started to live stream the ICC World Twenty20 cricket tournament in 2014. Facebook recently launched its video streaming platform – Facebook Watch, which is available on its app. Besides, Mohan will be leading the senior leadership team at Facebook India to strengthen the social networking giant’s relationships with the government and other businesses.
Mohan’s role will be limited to Facebook. He will not be heading Facebook-owned photo sharing app Instagram and messaging platform WhatsApp. According to a PTI report, WhatsApp has appointed Komal Lahiri as its grievance officer, a request that the government had recently made to WhatsApp CEO Chris Daniels.
“India is one of the largest and most strategically important countries for Facebook. As we think about what it will take to achieve our mission of bringing people together and building community, we know that investment in India is critical. Ajit’s depth of experience will help us to continue to have a positive impact in India across communities, organizations, businesses and with policymakers,” said David Fischer, vice-president of business and marketing partnerships at Facebook in a statement.
“I am delighted to take on the mantle of shaping Facebook’s charter in India. It is a unique opportunity to shape the agenda of a company that has brought the world closer together in one of the most exciting markets in the world. I look forward to championing India in Facebook and working with stakeholders across the spectrum to help build deep and meaningful communities across the country” Mohan added.
Mohan’s appointment comes nearly a year after Umang Bedi quit as the managing director of Facebook India. Bedi was in the role for a mere 15 months. Mohan will report to David Fischer, Facebook’s global vice president of business and marketing partnerships. Fischer works out of Facebook’s U.S. headquarters in Menlo Park, California.