The soft-spoken and unassuming nature of Bharathan Kandaswamy, Executive Director of Kavithalayaa Productions Pvt. Ltd. belies one of the finest minds in the Indian entertainment arena. Bharathan plays a challenging and multi-layered leadership role at the company where he is responsible for the development, strategy and management of its varied interests and associate entities. He has played a key role in the growth and maturing of Kavithalayaa as a corporate entity, ably pivoting it through the challenging times the industry has been through. His innovation and creativity in developing the Japanese and Korean markets for Indian films which resulted in the phenomenal success of the film "MUTHU–Dancing Maharaja' deserves special mention. As member of the leadership team that runs Kavithalayaa, Bharathan is today busy building a world class team and business model that would nurture and further grow the company in these challenging times.
An alumnus of Indian Institute of Management - Ahmedabad (IIMA), Bharathan began his career with Ashok Leyland Ltd. in Chennai as Senior Executive - Business Planning & Development. During his eight year stint, he developed computer-based project management and financial appraisal systems for the company. Post Ashok Leyland, Bharathan joined Kavithalayaa serving the company in various leadership roles for the past 18 years. He was Executive Producer of Award winning films such as Roja, Annamalai, Muthu and many others.
Bharathan's in-depth knowledge and understanding of the entertainment industry has led to him being a sought after advisor. He was Business Advisor to US-based Silicon Image Inc. engaged in the design and development of High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI), a content protection technology for multimedia content. He also served as an Advisor to Multimedia Development Corporation - a Government of Malaysia undertaking, on E-village, an entertainment and multimedia initiative project. In his individual capacity, he advises many companies in the areas of strategy, leadership and Innovation.
Bharathan is a Visiting faculty at IIM-Ahmedabad and played a key role in designing India's first management course on film industry for the institute. Mr Bharathan is also engaged in writing Case-studies on the Indian film industry, highlighting the business challenges in a creative industry. He regularly speaks at the events of CII (Confederation of Indian Industry), Indo-American Chamber of Commerce and Indo-Japan Chamber of Commerce & Industry, on topics related to the entertainment sector. He is currently on the Governing Council of Indo-Japan Chamber of Commerce & Industry and has participated in two industrial delegations to Japan, representing the sector. Bharathan was an invited speaker at the international seminar "Hollywood meets Bollywood" hosted by the University of Southern California Annenberg School of Communication in collaboration with American India Foundation (AIF) in 2003. He was a member of the FICCI Entertainment delegation to Japan and the USA in 2001 as well as the CII delegation to the American Film Market 2003 (AFMA) Santa Monica, California besides presenting a paper at the first International Advisory Board Meeting in Malaysia on Globalization of Entertainment industry in 2001.
A visionary leader who saw professionalism and innovation as essential to the survival and growth of the Indian film industry, Bharathan spends time proactively advocating the concept. He also pioneered the design and development of India's first software for the movie industry in 1998 apart from introducing several Best Practices. He also devotes significant time to V-Excel Educational Trust, a Chennai-based non-profit, public charitable trust which focuses on education of children with developmental disabilities and ALERT, another non-profit which is engaged in creating awareness and training of emergency medical response.