Universal Music India appoints Vijay Lazarus as chairman

New Delhi: Vijay Lazarus, president and managing director of Universal Music India, has been appointed chairman, effective 8 May 2003. It was announced today by Harry Hui, president of Universal Music Southeast Asia.

The appointment will enable Lazarus to focus on new initiatives, key strategic issues, and industry matters. Lazarus will continue to report directly to Hui.

Rajat Kakar, senior vice-president of sales and marketing services, has been promoted to managing director of Universal Music India, effective immediately. He will assume all day-to-day responsibility for the company, reporting directly to Hui. Kakar joined Universal Music in December 2002 after spending six years as the head of Sony Music India's sales and distribution.

Allen Andrade, senior vice-president and chief financial officer, has been promoted to executive VP and CFO of Universal Music India, effective immediately. He will continue with his existing responsibility and report to Kakar. Andrade joined Universal Music India in June 2002, from his role as finance director at Virgin India.

Says Hui: "Lazarus has been a cornerstone for our Indian company for more than 33 years. He has been instrumental in building up a great catalogue for Universal Music India and has contributed significantly to raising the Indian music industry to global standards. As chairman, he will focus his time on key issues facing the company and the industry."

He adds: "Kakar has shown the vision, initiative and industry knowledge to lead our company. We have a deep catalogue and a great artist roster in an exciting marketplace and I know that Kakar will be able to move the company forward. Andrade has done a tremendous job raising the operational performance standards of the company. I am confident these changes will make a formidable management structure going forward."

Says Lazarus: "The industry is facing adverse times and I am pleased to contribute to these specific areas that have become critical to our business. I firmly believe that India remains one of the most exciting and progressive markets in the music business."