The Indian advertising industry was left in shock following the death of Sidharth Rao due to a fatal heart attack.
Sidharth Rao, who founded Webchutney, one of India’s pioneering digital advertising agencies, and co-founded marketing technology firm Punt Partners, passed away on Friday.
His wife and parents survive him. In 1999, Rao launched Webchutney, later acquired by the Japanese international media network Dentsu in 2013.
Despite the acquisition, Rao continued to lead Webchutney, and in 2021, he was appointed as the head of the India unit of dentsuMB, the restructured global creative network of Dentsu.
Rao’s agency received the top honors at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in 2022 for Vice Media’s production titled “The Unfiltered History Tour.”
Sidharth Rao Death Cause: Heart Attack
The official statement by Punt Partners confirmed that Sidharth Rao passed away due to a fatal heart attack on April 2023 at his home in Karjat, Maharashtra.
A heart attack occurs when a sudden blockage in the blood vessels supplies the heart with oxygen-rich blood. This can lead to damage or death of the heart muscle.
A serious medical emergency can be fatal if not treated promptly. The statement did not provide any further details about the circumstances surrounding his heart attack or if he had any pre-existing medical conditions.
The news of Sidharth Rao’s sudden and unexpected passing has left many in shock and mourning.
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He was a prominent figure in the Indian advertising industry and contributed significantly to the growth and development of digital advertising in India. His legacy will continue to inspire and impact the industry for years.
The Career Of Sidharth Rao As A Co-Founder
Sidharth Rao was a co-founder of one of India’s earliest and most highly-regarded digital agencies named, Webchutney.
At 19, he established Webchutney, which won several awards at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in 2019.
Under Webchutney, he founded Network Play in 2008, rapidly becoming the largest brand ad network within three years, and was later acquired by Bertelsmann AG. Webchutney itself was acquired by Japanese media conglomerate Dentsu Aegis Network in 2013.
Although he continued to lead Webchutney, he was appointed head of the India unit of dentsuMB, a restructured global creative network of the Company, in 2021.
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In 2022, Rao stepped down as the group CEO of dentsuMB India and founded a new venture named Punt Partners in the marketing technology (MarTech) sector in collaboration with Madhu Sudan, a serial entrepreneur.
Tribute For Sidharth Rao From Rammohan Sundaram
In a heartfelt post on social media, Rammohan Sundaram, President of Integrated Media at DDB Mudra Group, shared his grief at the passing of Sidharth Rao.
Sundaram and Rao had a close professional and personal relationship that spanned over a decade. Sundaram reminisced about when Rao had supported him during the launch of NetworkPlay in 2008, which was a make-or-break moment for Sundaram.
Sundaram also spoke about the close bond he shared with Rao, often receiving video calls from him even at odd hours, where they had free-wheeling conversations that lasted for over 30 minutes.
He also condoned Rao’s wife, Shweta B., whom he knew Rao loved dearly.