Comma Consulting
Charting the future of public relations
Holmes Report
News and insights from the global PR industry

Comma Consulting

Public affairs, corporate and issues management. India

Holmes Report


In some respects, Comma Consulting exemplifies the power of India’s emergence onto the global communications stage. India is an old country with a young soul, and the same could conceivably be said of Comma, founded just five years ago by one of the country’s most respected industry veterans, Rajiv Desai. 
Desai set-up IPAN more than 20 years ago and, as such, there are very few brands or corporates that he has not counseled at some stage. Like its founder, Comma boasts of sophisticated strength in public affairs, corporate communication and issues management. Unsurprisingly, careful client selection is a priority, primarily because Desai remains in considerable demand for his strategic insight.
At Comma, Desai is supported by two senior executives. Arun Shaw serves as national media services director and heads Comma’s Delhi operations after joining from IPAN in 2008. Deepak Shankar focuses more on PR, events and research, and joined Comma in early 2010. 
Comma’s work on behalf of the con-troversial Bandra Worli Sea Link project provides apt evidence of the firm’s capabilities. The project faced a number of hurdles, including severe public criticism, and Comma’s work spanned crisis management, media relations and public affairs. Gradually, Comma was able to resolve many of the issues, with the bridge eventually inaugurated in mid-2009.
Business held up for Comma in 2009, thanks to the arrival of new clients such as Bharti Airtel, Scottish Development International, SUIG and the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. The agency remains unaffiliated, although there are regular reports of acquisition interest from the global networks.—AS
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