Dear MxM by Jaisurya Das: Is HT’s Pune edition a wise business decision?

06 Jul,2017

By Jaisurya Das

 

Welcome back, Ladies and Gentleman to yet another week of Dear MxM, your friend in need!

July has been an exciting month to say the least for all of us in this country. The introduction of GST and matters such taking centrestage. Now, it’s a different matter that a lot of us are still grappling with the above subject to put it mildly.

From what I figure, most people are in the same boat as I am and their understanding of GST begins and ends with the fact that it is a goods and service tax. I know the media has been trying to cover various aspects of it but then who reads any longer… !

My chartered accountant seems happy though since it obviously heralds some fresh business opportunities for his firm. I didn’t particularly enjoy the glee on his face though but that I guess is ok.

The long and short of all this is the fact that we have dived into it and I guess there is no other way but to roll these things out all at one go..

So, with deep understanding of everything save GST, we shall plod on with our lives.

May I take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy learning experience. And, yes, if you do figure it all out, please do share your learnings…

On that hopeful note, let’s move on to this week’s set of questions from our readers in Delhi, Ahmedabad and Chandigarh.

 

I am one of those who got retrenched by Hindustan Times a few months back and I now learn that the paper has launched its Pune edition. This is the same city where two papers have shut editions – DNA and Mid-Day. Do you think the Pune edition of HT is a wise business decision?

Thanks for writing in, my friend… I have answered this in my previous columns here. At this stage it is far too early to comment on its possible success, however they certainly do have an opportunity to do fairly well.

The Pune market does need a strong No 2 with credible content and numbers to back it. As of now, my estimate would be an approximate circulation of 30,000 copies currently which could grow to a reasonable 75,000 over the next eight months.

This would then give them a share of the local advertising revenue which is the mainstay of a newspaper from a business perspective.

They are taking a more cautious route with marketing and DVC (Direct Variable Costs) and hence profitability levels are achievable at a lower threshold. Hence, yes, it could prove to be a sensible business decision down the line.

 

Recently I heard of a friend’s father who is a mid-level advertising sales executive being hit by the heatwave because his work required him to always be on the field. But when it came to leaves his company disallowed them even though his state of health was caused because of his work. The company said even if the illness could be because of his work, it will need to count them as sick leaves, as per rules. Don’t you think it’s unfair? Or is that how it works when you work?

This is certainly the way work is and there is no reason for him to be taking up a field job if his health does not allow for this.

I don’t think the company is unreasonable with their decision and sick leave is the only option till he recovers. Being employee-friendly is one aspect but you cannot expect companies to have people on board who are away from work for long periods of time be it health or other reasons.

I suggest he look at alternate roles to alleviate the current concern.

 

Sir, don’t you get tired of the questions posed to you every week? Are you truly committed to counselling people? Playing Agony Uncle can’t be fun?

Ha ha, indeed it can be very tiring and often monotonous save the few interesting questions like this one !

For the record, I have been into counselling for years now both online and offline though not for profit. It is extremely satisfying to be able to help people who are going through tough patches at work and hence I don’t consider this role a task.

And, yes, it can be fun too with some hideous questions coming in once in a while!

 

And on that fun note, it is time for my exit for the week but you can be sure I will be back as the Agony Uncle in the hotseat!Till then, enjoy your rainy weekend and take good care of yourselves! Sayonara and God Bless!

 

Jaisurya Das, maverick and media evangelist eats, sleeps and makes love to brands. His consulting interventions are aimed at making brands powerful and sustainable. He is also the Contributing Editor of MxM India and Co-Founder of pune365.com.For more on his work visit www.xanadu.co.in. The views expressed in this column are his own.

 


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