Eros International, the largest integrated Indian film studio, is pleased to announce the appointment of Ricky Ghai, 50, with effect from July 2011, as Chief Executive Officer of Eros Digital, the rapidly growing digital and new media arm of Eros International plc. Ricky will be based in Eros’ operating offices primarily in India, as well as the UAE, UK and US.
Ricky joins Eros from the Abu Dhabi Media Company (“ADM”), where he had led the Digital Group since its inception in 2007. Ricky initiated a wave of strategic international investments at ADM, establishing independent, vertical subsidiaries in gaming and digital marketing. In partnership with Sony and Universal Music Groups, he also oversaw ADM’s founding stake in online music video portal VEVO, where he was also a Board member. Complementing ADM’s substantial online print and broadcasting properties, Ricky also helmed the launch of a live online English Premier League subscription service across the MENA region for ADM last year.
Before ADM, Ricky spent over 25 years in a variety of media roles starting with ten years at the BBC in content acquisition and business development roles. This was followed by senior programming positions at TV3 Sweden, MBC Group and Orbit (now OSN). More recently, Ricky worked with BT Vision launching their video on demand (“VOD”) service in the UK. This has proven Ricky as a pioneer in the evolution of content distribution into the digital age.
Ricky joins Eros at a very exciting time in the Company’s digital expansion strategy. Currently, Eros is implementing the full digitization of its 2,100-strong film library, which will assist the Company in monetizing its intellectual property. Digitization enables the production and delivery of content across web, mobile and other new media platforms. It also enables Eros to easily access the entire Indian diaspora across the world, as well as domestically in India. According to the April 2011 Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry / KPMG report, annual growth rates in the digital sub-sector of the Media & Entertainment industry in India exceed 30%, far in excess of more traditional sub-sectors.
Kishore Lulla, Executive Chairman of Eros commented on the appointment: “Eros Digital will be an increasingly large contributor to Eros International Plc’s growth over the medium term and the appointment of Ricky is a statement of our intent in this arena. We are already involved in cutting edge developments in the digital sphere, including the full digitization of our extensive movie library. I am confident that Ricky will add greatly to our existing digital momentum.”
Commenting on his appointment at Eros, Ricky Ghai said: “Eros is unquestionably a highly respected international brand, and having grown up as a consumer of its content, I am now very excited to be part of the group. As media companies across the globe look for new ideas and migrate traditional business to digital platforms, Eros has all the right ingredients; credentials, talent, compelling content and technology at its fingertips, to lead the field. In the coming months, we aim to take Eros to another level. Good ideas are easy to find, but it’s our ability for excellence in execution that will stand us apart.”