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MDEC appoints former Microsoft head of comms to head of its newsroom

Dashika MDEC Head of Newsroom 2

Cyberjaya, Malaysia – Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), the country’s government agency for leading the nation’s digital economy, has nabbed the Head of Communications at Microsoft Malaysia, Dashika Gnaneswaran, to lead its newsroom. 

As the new senior manager, Gnaneswaran will bolster the Brand and Strategic Partnerships department, bringing local and international experience through driving strategic communications and building brands by working in areas such as public affairs, social impact projects, and crisis communications as well as social media strategy. She reports directly to Raymond Siva, chief marketing officer and head of the Digital Investments division.

The appointment of Gnaneswaran comes as the agency refreshes its leadership and management structure under its ‘Reinvent’ mission, where it aims to intensify initiatives in growing the nation’s digital economy in the new normal. 

“As part of MDEC’s ‘Reinvent’ – a strategic change management exercise that was recently launched to inculcate a high-performing and high-impact organization, the agency continues to build capabilities internally while identifying the right skills for managerial roles, to ensure optimal performance of our departments,” said Surina Shukri, CEO of MDEC.

“As MDEC enables Malaysia to achieve its vision of a people-first society in the age of 4IR technology, leading to shared prosperity for all or Malaysia 5.0, we ourselves must be equipped with the right talents – globally competitive talents,” added Shukri. 

Under the move, the agency is in the mid of bringing in exceptional talents with both private and public sector experience. In the newly organized structure, Gnaneswaran’s department comes under the Digital Investments division.

At Microsoft, Gnaneswaran led communications efforts and nation-building campaigns. Her work scope included managing corporate strategy, championing brand advocacy and internal advisory, alongside building media relationships and philanthropy plans. Prior to that, she was at Malaysia’s largest financial investment institution, Kenanga Investment Bank, where she was responsible for brand management, marketing, digital communications, and investor relations.

“At MDEC we practice a continuous-learning mindset, enabling us to successfully drive high-impact digital outreach for the society and economy. Dashika brings 16 years of public and private sector experience spanning international and local organizations with her, and I am sure she will be an inspiration to the exceptional talents we currently have. I am excited to have her lead our Newsroom team and reshape the way we approach outreach and engagement with the people and industry,” said Siva.

Meanwhile, on her appointment, Gnaneswaran commented, “It is an honor to be able to serve the nation, under the strong leadership that MDEC has today. I am driven by a passion to help bridge the digital divide through transformative mindsets, innovation and inclusivity. I look forward to leveraging my experience to bring positive impact to those who can benefit with digital enablement and intervention most and I will give my fullest to support and accelerate the high impact work that MDEC does to transform the digital economy.”

MDEC’s mission to lead Malaysia’s digital economy is supported by three strategic priorities, namely, digitally skilled Malaysians, digitally powered businesses, and digital investments; driving the nation to embrace 4IR technologies or the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ which is mainly defined as the merge of advances in AI, robotics, IoT, and a whole lot other technologies.

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