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Ronnie Screwvala Founder and CEO of highly acclaimed UTV Group

Ronnie Screwvala Founder and CEO of highly acclaimed UTV Group

Ronnie Screwvala Founder and CEO of highly acclaimed UTV Group

Born on the 8th of June 1956; Rohinton Soli Screwvala – better known as “Ronnie Screwvala” turned into the Founder and CEO of the very well-known and particularly acclaimed UTV Group which covered UTV Software Communications, Bloomberg UTV, UTV Motion Pictures and plenty of more!

A Parsi through blood, Ronnie became born in Mumbai and finished his research at Cathedral and John Connon School and Sydenham College. His father used to paintings for British firms J L Morrison and Smith & Nephew as an govt.

Ronnie is married to Zarina Mehta, who he happened to fulfill throughout his theatre days with Pearl Padamsee. Together with their daughter – Trishya Screwvala, they stay in Breach Candy, South Mumbai.

Since his early days simplest, Ronnie always had a keen interest in theatre and he additionally acted in pretty a few professional plays with Bombay theatre with a number of the greats of the enterprise which include Pearl and Alyque Padamsee.

And as of 2015, Ronnie Screwvala is writing a ebook titled as – “Dream With Your Eyes Open”. Also, Ronnie has cited the opportunity of a TV show as properly following the release of the book. (Source: Livemint)

Out in their more than 70 movies; some of the exceptionally popular movies that he has produced or co-produced under his UTV movement photos banner: – (2006) Rang De Basanti, (2006) The Namesake, (2006) Khosla Ka Ghosla, (2008) Jodhaa Akbar, (2008) A Wednesday, (2008) Fashion, (2009) ExTerminators (Hollywood), (2009) Kaminey: The Scoundrels, (2010) Udaan, (2010) I Hate Luv Storys, (2011) Delhi Belly, (2012) Barfi!, (2013) Chennai Express, and lots of greater!

Early Life

Now most people already are aware that Ronnie began his profession with UTV in the yr 1990. But what remains a lesser acknowledged truth is that; in reality his entrepreneurial adventure started a decade earlier than UTV even got here to existence.

In the early days; Ronnie’s father desired him to come to be a Chartered Accountant just like each other father those days. But Ronnie not like his father’s views, desired to begin his very own business. And to reap that; at the same time as he changed into searching out enterprise opportunities, he took up a job of a copywriter.

Later, on a ride to England along with his father, Ronnie were given a danger to visit a hairbrush manufacturing facility. There, he saw  discarded completely functional computerized toothbrush making machines. He determined to purchase it, and got it for £4,000.

As soon as he got here returned to India, he commenced his personal commercial enterprise of manufacturing toothbrushes. And many years later, the company went on to grow to be the most important dealer of toothbrushes within the united states who supplied to the notable manufacturers like Colgate Palmolive. And finally Ronnie bought the employer in 2004 at a profit.

Other than that; at the age of simply 25 years or in 1981, he started his own cable network corporation by using the call “Network”, considered one of the most important gaps of those days. He again then, used to move from door to door in his building and satisfied the residents to sign up for his cable provider at a fee of INR 2 hundred in line with month.

At a time whilst the handiest aspect available become Doordarshan – was the state tv issuer, Network provided a three-hour video channel showing films! This began with just 30 homes and went directly to spread to homes in Cuffe Parade, Colaba, Napeansea Road, Breach Candy and Hanging Gardens, in a blink of an eye fixed.

Apart from the fact that, the concept turned into way beforehand of its time and exceedingly innovative; what became commendable changed into that at such a younger age, Ronnie really understood the importance of desirable provider. He made positive to take care of his customers by way of supplying family oriented content material with precise photo high-quality and often met his clients to understand their viewing preferences.

He simply held characteristics of a a success and ambitious entrepreneur of nowadays’s instances.

Also Read:- Meet these 13 women entrepreneurs ruling start-up trend in India

UTV Group

Ronnie founded the UTV Group along together with his wife Zarina Screwvala and high-quality friend Deven Khote inside the year 1990, to offer tv content to broadcasters. It became the primary impartial production of India and the company began off through making classified ads and corporate movies.

Then it also started out producing quiz suggests for Doordarshan titled – ‘Mashoor Mahal’ in which Ronnie acted as the Assistant Director of the display. He also created, directed & produced many other suggests like ‘The Mathemagic Show’, ‘Lifeline’ (a quick movie), ‘Contact’, ‘Shakuntala’, and so on!

Believe it or no longer, in a span of much less than two decades, UTV expanded into broadcasting, gaming, film and numerous different groups.

Now the largest soar the organisation got was during the time of incorporation! They at that time had been normally engaged inside the production of tv content material for Doordarshan – Prasar Bharti along with producing advert movies.

That is while Subhash Chandra-owned Zee TV; which had simply began, became looking for true pleasant, however low price range content material & programming and turned into willing to experiment with creativity. And with that, they got a 550-episode agreement and from there onwards there was no looking lower back for UTV!

The chain of occasions that befell from right here onwards were as follows: –

  • UTV first improved its attain into in-flight amusement programming and dubbing as nicely at the equal time with their customer – Air India.

In 1993, it started out to gather applications from outside producers and started advertising and marketing airtime on their packages.

In 1995,

  • It released a every day soap titled ‘Shanti.’ Alongside of that; it additionally acquired fifty four.60% stake in Laezer Production Private Limited with an aim to enter into put up-production. Later that organisation become renamed as UTV Studios Limited in December 1995, and supplied publish-production centers to television software program homes, private manufacturers and advertisers.
  • The business enterprise later inside the same 12 months also ventured into the movie distribution enterprise

In 1996,

  • UTV Group and Disney got into a contract to dub Disney’s library into Indian languages.
  • In the same 12 months; UTV’s In-flight Entertainment department, also started out catering to different global airlines.

In 1998,

  • The business enterprise’s subsidiary USL (UTV Studios Limited) acquired Ram Mohan Biographies, an animation production house pioneered by Ram Mohan himself – a main animation artiste inside the u . S . And named it RM-USL which later got renamed to UTV Toons.
  • UTV took a numerous turn into broadcasting, with the aid of obtaining a controlling hobby in Vijay Television Limited which operated Vijay TV, a 24-hour Tamil-language channel out of Chennai; from United Breweries Group.

In 2000,

  1. With an 86% stake, UTV integrated a collection employer referred to as ‘UTV Net Solutions Ltd.’ (UTV Net) with a focus on Internet content material creation and collection via Indian nearby language portals (with dual language content material) and controlling in their audio/video library rights for Internet utilization.
  2. Later within the identical 12 months, UTV Net also started out broadband content material series under the emblem call of sharkstream.Com, via its Singapore-primarily based subsidiary Sharkstream.Com Pte. Ltd.
  3. After that, the enterprise sold the studio enterprise of Western Outdoor Media Technologies Limited (WOMTL) with intentions to benefit a simple leadership role within the Post-Production, Special Effects and Animation genre.

In 2004, UTV released ‘Hungama Channel’ which went on to end up one of the leading youngsters’s tv channels in India within the following few years.

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In 2005,

  • UTV Group got itself indexed on the Bombay and National Stock Exchange.
  • UTV closed a outsourcing partnership deal really worth $10 Million with US-based BKN New Media Inc.; after which, UTV Toons multiplied to two hundred employees and also bought extra Autodesk 3-D’s Max 8 software licenses.

In 2008, UTV entered into the broadcasting enterprise once again through its broadcast arm, UTV Global Broadcasting Ltd (UGBL). And went on to open six channels: –

  • Bindass (formerly UTV Bindass)
  • UTV Stars
  • UTV Action (formerly Bindass Movies)
  • UTV Movies
  • UTV Movies International (International service available in North America, United Kingdom)
  • UTV World Movies

In 2011, an era in the end came to an give up whilst Ronnie sold UTV to ‘The Walt Disney Enterprises’ at round INR 20 billion (2,000 crores).

What many tried to do on account that 2007 but couldn’t attain, was sooner or later performed by way of Disney.

As a part of this deal; Disney made a complete buyout of the public shareholders and delisted UTV from both the Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange and with that W.E.F. 2d February 2012 UTV have become a wholly owned subsidiary of Disney South East Asia Pte. And Ronnie persevered with the location of the Managing Director.

Out of the INR 2000 crores that he made from with the sale, round INR 800 crores become used to invest in begin-americathru Unilazer Ventures (a personal equity assignment fund of Ronnie Screwvala). And the various organizations he invested consist of Internet groups like –

  • Valyoo – runs the e-trade enterprise Lenskart
  • OnContract – Employee market,
  • com – online career counselling company,
  • Himex – car analytics company
  • in – puppy ecommerce web page,
  • Vellvette – on line cosmetics store,
  • IIMJobs – on line jobs portal,
  • Mapmytalent – on-line flair check web site,
  • 91Mobiles – fee comparison website, apart from a few offline ventures!

Also Read:- Deep Kalra: Travel Booking Made Easy Through MakeMyTrip

And in 2014; Ronnie surprised all people with an legitimate confirmation that he might be stepping down and from the placement and quitting the enterprise for right and that Siddharth Roy Kapur would be taking over, whilst as according to statistics he became on a agreement of five years.

Thus ended an unforgettable Journey of Ronnie Screwvala & UTV!

Subsidiaries & Joint Ventures

During their direction of time, UTV has formed pretty a few Joint Ventures & Subsidiaries; these include: –

UTV Motion Pictures: – The agency became integrated in March 2007 and is also admitted to trading on Alternate Investment Market (“AIM”) of the London Stock Exchange. The first film produced became Dil Ke Jharoke Main.

UTV TV Content Limited (UTV TV): – UTV TV become a totally owned subsidiary of UTV Software Communications Ltd and became incorporated in July 2007 with an goal to produce, show off and distribute tv serials/programmes for television.

IG Interactive Entertainment Limited (IG): – IG changed into registered in September 2004 with a clean mind-set of accomplishing Film Acquisitions, Syndications and Distribution business within the UK.

UTV Communications (USA) LLC (UTV USA): - UTV US was fashioned in April 2004 with a comparable aim to that of IG i.E. Sporting out movie acquisitions, syndications and distribution commercial enterprise, however inside the United State of America (North America) and other surrounding territories.

First Future Agri and Developers Limited (FFADL): – Incorporated in April 2008; First Future Agri and Developers Private Limited Company is again a totally owned subsidiary of UTV Software Communications Ltd. Dealing into agricultural improvement.

UTV Global Broadcasting Limited (UGBL): – Started in June 2007; UGBL deals in broadcasting of satellite tv channels in India in which UTV Software Communications Ltd. Holds seventy five% fairness stake and as an entire, the organisation is absolutely owned subsidiaries of, Genx Entertainment Limited (Genx) and UTV Entertainment Limited (UETL).

UTV Games Limited (UTV Games): – Started in September 2008, UTV Games Limited, a one hundred% belongings of UTV Software Communications Ltd. Incorporates the essential activity as of funding maintaining. It also made an acquisition of eighty% fairness stake in True Games Interactive Inc, an online gaming begin-up Company primarily based in California, USA.

UTV New Media Limited (UNML): – UNML once more a fully owned subsidiary of UTV Software Communications Ltd. Become integrated in September 2007 to behavior the improvement & preservation of websites and acquisition and exploitation of virtual rights on cell and virtual platforms.

Smriti Irani Television Limited (SITL): – Smriti Irani Television Limited is a 50:50 Joint Venture among UTV Software Communications Ltd. And Mrs. Smriti Irani and changed into formed in December 2007 with a number one awareness of tv content material production.


SHARE: – Ronnie within the early days of UTV itself fashioned a basis of Society to Heal Aid Restore Educate (SHARE) for the rural development in Maharashtra.

And with Swades, beneath his former brand name SHARE, Ronnie intends to empower the communities with choices for themselves and their households, and objectives to present them the capability of reworking their personal lives. So a long way, inside the final 5 years has provided 39,000 people in 139 villages in rural Maharashtra with drinking water.

Also Read:- Dhruvam: The Man Behind 'The SMART Taxi'

Till date, Ronnie has chipped in a whooping INR 2350 crores into the inspiration from his very own pocket, on the identical time that's matched with an equal amount in donations as well.


  • Named on Esquire’s List of the 75 Most Influential People of the 21st Century (2008)
  • Ranked 78th of the one hundred maximum influential humans inside the global on the Time 100 (2009)
  • Listed amongst 25 Asia’s Most Powerful by way of Fortune Magazine
  • Named as the Entrepreneur of the year by way of Ernst & Young
  • Awarded the GQ “Philanthopist of the Year” for his paintings with Swades Foundation (2014)


09 Mar, 2023




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