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Rediff picks US firm for healthcare foray

Calcutta, Nov. 20: Rediffusion DY&R is setting up a separate joint venture with the New York-based healthcare communications major Sudler & Hennessey in order to diversify into the healthcare segment.

Rediffusion chairman and managing director Arun Nanda told The Telegraph that the joint venture would open new vistas for the advertising major giving it an edge over other major domestic players. “The decision on setting up the joint venture is already finalised. The new company will be operational in the next three months,” Nanda said.

The new company will be christened Sudler & Hennessey (India).

Nanda, however, refused to divulge the investment required for the joint venture. Neither did he comment on what would be the holding pattern. The only thing he said is that both Rediffusion and Sudler & Hennessey will invest in the equity of the new company. “For us, it will be a very important step as healthcare is set for a huge growth in the years to come,” he added.

Sudler & Hennessey has been operating in 24 front-ranking metropolitan cities across 11 countries in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific.

Founded in 1941, Sudler & Hennessey was acquired by leading multinational Young & Rubican Inc in 1973. Incidentally, Young & Rubican is also a partner of Rediffusion in India. The company develops strategic, promotional and educational programmes for a broad array of healthcare brands. In addition to pharmaceutical promotion, it provides strategic consultancy and communications support in the areas of managed care, medical devices and equipment, nutrition, veterinary medicine and general healthcare marketing related issues. The company also produces programmes to reach a wide range of healthcare professionals, their patients and support networks.

Regarding Rediffusion’s performance, Nanda said the company is set to do a business of over Rs 700 crore in the current financial year despite the general slowdown in the industry.

“The last two financial years have been very trying times for the ad industry. But the situation is slightly changing over the past one quarter with the white goods, auto and electronic sectors reporting sizeable growth. If the trend continues, the ad industry will definitely report higher growth in the current fiscal,” he said.

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