Google Replaces India Manager after Big Revenue Decline

Google (GOOGL) has hired Sanjay Gupta as its new India manager. Gupta will replace Rajan Anandan, who left the company in April. Vikas Agnihotri took over temporarily.

Google’s India sales have fallen sharply. In the fiscal year ended March 2019, Google’s India revenue fell 55.6% to about $41.5 billion rupees ($580 million), reports Business Standard. The company blamed changes in accounting standards for the big revenue decline. However, Google’s business in the country remained profitable in the fiscal year, with its profit rising 16% to about $66 million.

Gupta is moving to Google from Walt Disney-owned (DIS) Star India. He helped build Star’s video streaming service, Hotstar. The Hotstar platform offers both ad-supported and premium subscription videos. In the video ad market, Hotstar competes with Google’s YouTube. Hotstar is Netflix’s (NFLX) toughest competitor in India.

India presents huge market opportunity for Google’s smartphone business

Google will be counting on Gupta to steer its business in the world’s fastest-growing smartphone market, India. Making smartphones has become a major part of Google’s business as the company works to diversify its revenue sources. Last month, it launched the Pixel 4. However, the phone contains technology that has disqualified it from the Indian market.

India presents a big market opportunity for Google’s cloud business

India also boasts a rapidly expanding cloud computing market, an area of interest for Google. Nasscom estimates India’s cloud computing market is growing 30% annually and will be worth $7.1 billion by 2022. Gupta is joining Google’s operations as the company is working to triple its India cloud sales team to grab the market opportunity.

India presents a lucrative advertising market

India’s digital advertising market is expanding rapidly. By 2021, Zenith Media expects digital ad spending in India to grow to about $3.2 billion from $1.5 billion in 2018. India’s total ad market will be worth about $14.2 billion in 2021, forecasts Zenith. Google derives most of its revenue from ad sales.