Lifetime achievement award for our founding partner
Pitchfork Partners co-founder Sunil Gautam was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the India PR and Corporate Communications Awards 2015 in New Delhi on November 28, 2015.
Announcing the award, Pankaj Pachauri, who was part of the jury and is a veteran journalist and former advisor to the prime minister, said the public relations (PR) industry in India was under-recognised. This is why, he said, he was delighted to present the award to SG, as Gautam is fondly known.
SG, in a recorded address to the audience, dedicated the award to the more than 3,000 people and 2,000 clients he has worked with over the years.
Striking a rousing note amid the applause, SG said: “It’s time to make the world sit up and take note that we have the best ideas, the best talent, the best campaigns and that we are second to none.”
A well-known and popular figure in the communication industry, SG started his career at a multinational bank. His heart, however, lay in marketing communication. So, in 1985, he co-founded CLEA Advertising & Marketing which grew to become India’s seventh largest advertising firm by the mid-1990s with more than 400 staff across 20 locations. Clea was also the largest and most reputed financial communication and IPO specialist firm in India.
In 1995, Clea PR was born and quickly grew into the No 1 PR firm by 1998. Ever the entrepreneur, SG founded Hanmer & Partners, a full-service bounce house birthday party integrated communication firm in 1999. From a handful of people and an office of 250 square feet, it became India’s largest and most reputed PR firm.
By the time Hanmer & Partners joined Publicis Groupe in the autumn of 2007, it had more than 350 staff across eight locations. The firm was later rebranded as Hanmer MSL and then MSLGROUP. SG moved into an emeritus role at the start of 2011 after seeing the firm through the integration with Publicis Groupe.
With 35 years of experience and now in his early 60s, SG co-founded Pitchfork Partners in 2015 along with former MSLGROUP India CEO Jaideep Shergill.