Rajesh Kamat

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Rajesh Kamat
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Born (1973-09-25) 25 September 1973 (age 50)
OccupationMedia Investor
Years active1997 - present
Known forMedia, Entertainment and Investment
TitleManaging Director, Emerald Media
Spouse(s)Manasi Kamat

Rajesh Kamat (born September 25, 1973) is the Managing Director of Emerald Media, a KKR-backed pan-Asian platform established to invest in fast-growing entertainment industries across Asia. Based out of Singapore, Kamat was instrumental in leading the entertainment channel ‘Colors’ to the top position within 9 months of its launch.[1]


Kamat began his career in brand management at Coca-Cola India in 1997. Later, he worked with Star TV News Corp. (Asian Arm), Endemol India (India's largest TV production company), Colors, Viacom18, Peter Chernin's CA Media platform and is now the Managing Director of KKR backed Emerald Media.[2]

Positions held

Position Organisation
Senior Vice President Star TV News Corp. (Asian Arm)
Managing Director Endemol India
CEO Colors (Viacom18 Group)
COO Viacom18 Group
COO CA Media Asia
Managing Director Emerald Media (KKR's Asian Media platform)

Coca Cola India - Star TV News Corp. Asian Arm

Kamat started his career with Coca Cola India in 1997. From 2001-2005, he worked with Star TV India, as Senior Vice President – Commercial and Business Planning for Star TV India.

Endemol India

In 2006, Kamat joined Endemol India (now Endemol Shine India)[3][4] as Managing Director for Endemol, the television production company with a global network of operations in more than 30 countries. Here, he introduced shows like The Great Indian Laughter Challenge, and local adaptations of Dutch reality shows Big Brother (Bigg Boss in India) and Fear Factor India into mainstream Indian television.[5]

Colors and Viacom 18

In 2008, Kamat joined the Viacom18 Group (a joint venture between Viacom and Network18) as CEO for their upcoming new General Entertainment Channel (GEC) in Hindi, Colors, [6] Kamat is credited to have to have made Colors successful in the first week of launch itself.[7] Colors rivaled channels like Zee and Starplus with shows like Big Boss, Fear Factor (aired on Colors and produced by Endemol India) and social dramas like Balika Vadhu, an Indian soap opera revolving around the subject of child marriage.

In 2010, Kamat became COO of Viacom18.[8] As COO, he set-up Sun18, a joint venture between Viacom18 and Sun TV for pan-India distribution of TV channels.[9] The alliance gave Sun18 the title of “largest multilingual TV network in India.[10]

CA Media

In 2011, Peter Chernin's CA Media approached Kamat to head its Asian arm in India as CEO[11] and in 2014 he became CA Media's Group COO for Asia.[12] Under Kamat's leadership, CA Media acquired a minor stake in Endemol India,[13] a content production company across television, film and digital content. It also acquired a stake in Only Much Louder (OML) - a live events, music and youth media company in India along with Graphic India,[14][15] a character entertainment company focused on creating lead characters, comics and stories for young Indians through mobile and digital platforms. CA Media also launched Fluence, an online influencer network around celebrities and brands.[16] Kamat's role with CA Media was also focused towards increasing its influence in growth sectors like TV Broadcast in Asian markets such as Indonesia (NET Mediatama).

Emerald Media

In 2015, as Managing Director of Emerald Media,[17] he co-headed a platform set up by KKR to Invest in Asian Media Sector, alongside Paul Aiello.[18] Private equity fund KKR & Co. has committed up to $300 million to the Emerald Media platform from its KKR Asia Fund II, to fund investments capitalizing on fast-growing opportunities in the media & entertainment industries across Asia. On 2 Nov 2015, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Private-equity firm, KKR was backing Rajesh Kamat and Paul Aiello, to form Emerald Media that was established to make investments in media companies with deals ranging from $15 million to $75 million.[19] The Asian media portfolio of the Chernin Group with a minor but significant stake in CA Media was acquired by KKR as well. Kamat and Aiello still continue to manage the CA Media platform.

Emerald Media's Key Investments in Asia and India:

  • Yupp TV (2016): An over-the-top (OTT) video platform for South Asian content.
  • aCommerce (2017): South-East Asian e-commerce enabler and e-distributor[20][21][22]
  • Cosmos-Maya (2018): in An IP-led Indian kid's animation content company functioning through a combination of primary & secondary stake acquisition.[23][24][25][26]
  • Global Sports Commerce/ GSC (2018): A sports technology and management company.[27][28]

Honors and awards

Kamat was awarded the "Impact Media Person of Year' in 2009,[29] followed by the 'Outstanding Entrepreneur of Asia Pacific' award for 2010.[30]

In 2014, he was recognized by the first "The Economic Times-Spencer Stuart '40 under 40' award for India's Business Leaders."[31]


  1. "Colors' Rajesh Kamat took the TV channel to top spot in 9 months". The Economic Times. 2014-05-02. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  2. Emerald Media
  3. https://endemolshineindia.in/
  4. "Endemol announces its first Asian subsidiary in India". afaqs!. Retrieved 2020-02-07.
  5. "Endemol scripts a success story in India- Business News". www.businesstoday.in. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  6. "Viacom 18's new GEC to be called Colors". afaqs!. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  7. "Colors' Rajesh Kamat took the TV channel to top spot in 9 months". The Economic Times. 2014-05-02. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  8. Russell, Ishita (2010-01-18). "Rajesh Kamat named COO of Viacom 18 Group". Livemint. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  9. "Network18 and Sun form distribution alliance, Sun18". afaqs!. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  10. "Network18, Sun form distribution JV". Indian Television Dot Com. 2010-07-13. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  11. Frater, Patrick; Frater, Patrick (2014-03-10). "Peter Chernin's CA Media Picks Kamat as COO". Variety. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  12. "CA Media elevates Rajesh Kamat to Asia Group COO - Exchange4media". Indian Advertising Media & Marketing News – exchange4media. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  13. Bansal, Shuchi (2012-04-27). "CA Media acquires 49% stake in Endemol India". Livemint. Retrieved 2020-02-07.
  14. Laghate, Gaurav (2013-01-17). "Chernin Group's CA Media acquires minority stake in Graphic India". Business Standard India. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  15. "Graphic India raises $2.8M led by CA Media and Start Media". VCCircle. 2015-03-19. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  16. "Peter Chernin's Man in India: Rajesh Kamat (Q&A)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  17. https://www.emeraldmedia.asia/
  18. "Kamat and Paul Aiello to jointly head KKR's new platform".{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  19. Carew, Rick (2015-11-02). "KKR to Back Pan-Asia Media Investment Platform Emerald Media". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  20. Laghate, Gaurav (2017-11-20). "Emerald Media leads $65 million Series B funding of Southeast Asian ecommerce companies". The Economic Times. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  21. "Southeast Asia's aCommerce lands $65M led by KKR-backed Emerald Media". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  22. "Tech in Asia - Connecting Asia's startup ecosystem". www.techinasia.com. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  23. Frater, Patrick; Frater, Patrick (2018-01-11). "Emerald Media Buys Control of Indian Animator Cosmos-Maya". Variety. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  24. "KKR-backed Emerald Media to Acquire Cosmos-Maya". The Economic Times. 2018-01-11. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  25. "KKR-backed Emerald Media takes control of animation firm Cosmos-Maya". VCCircle. 2018-01-11. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  26. "Emerald Media takes controlling stake in animation studio Cosmos-Maya". DealStreetAsia. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  27. PM, Indulal (2018-03-22). "Emerald media invests $80m for minority stake in GSC". The Economic Times. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  28. Mar 23, Boby Kurian | TNN |; 2018; Ist, 4:00. "KKR-backed Emerald puts Rs 520cr into sports co GSC - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 2020-02-06.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  29. "Colors' Rajesh Kamat is impact Person of the Year 2009 - Exchange4media". Indian Advertising Media & Marketing News – exchange4media. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  30. "Enterprise Asia names Rajesh Kamat ?Outstanding Entrepreneur of Asia-Pacific? for 2010". Indian Television Dot Com. 2010-11-22. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  31. "India's Hottest 40 Under 40 Business Leaders". The Economic Times. Retrieved 2020-02-06.

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