Vijay Sampath Is New CEO of Future Ventures' Controlled Amar Chitra Katha
Mumbai-headquartered ACK Media is behind brands such as Amar Chitra Katha, Tinkle, Karadi Tales and well-known proprietary characters like Suppandi. The firm that develops products for multiple platforms including print, home video, broadcast television, films, mobile and online services, has a design studio in Bengaluru and a subsidiary in Chennai.
Future Ventures had disclosed that it has acquired 30 per cent stake 'from existing promoters' of the company, thus increasing its shareholding to 56 per cent and making ACK its subsidiary. However, the deal size has not been disclosed.
Although the children publication brands have been in the market for many years, it became a corporate play around four years ago when former McKinsey employee Samir Patil partnered with Shripal Morakhia to buy properties like Amar Chitra Katha, Tinkle and Karadi Tales from India Book House. Morakhia is the founder of institutional investment banking company SSKI (which was acquired by IDFC) and retail broking company Sharekhan (acquired by Citi Venture Capital).
ACK Media website still lists Samir Patil as its CEO.
Last year, the company had entered the business of media distribution by acquiring India Book House, one of the largest distributors of books and magazines in India. Besides its majority shareholder Future Venture ACK also has investments from AIM-listed India focused private equity firm Elephant Capital.
A graduate of XLRI Jamshedpur, Sampath started his career as a product manager at luggage products maker Blow Plast and then moved on to Zee Interactive Learning Systems Ltd and was head of the retail education business. He moved on to become executive veep at Zee Telefilms and was part of chairman's corporate centre. After that he spent four years with Bennett Coleman & Co Ltd involved in corporate strategy, business development and joint ventures.
In 2008 he moved on as the CEO of Aliagroup, a branding and marketing services group. As a part of Aliagroup, ICA invests in helping growing businesses and overcome roadblocks as a venture incubator.