Business organizations in today's era have to rely on profits, losses and growth, which are tabulated in excel sheets in order to make long term projections and also gauge financial stability. But media mogul Arnab Ranjan Goswami has a contrasting view that businesses built merely on the basis of excel sheets may not survive at all. He delineated his thoughts at a plenary keynote session delivered at the third edition of 'BW Disrupt 40 Under 40' organized by BW Businessworld held in New Delhi on October 23, 2019.
While addressing the occasion, Goswami, who is also the MD and a majority owner of Republic TV affirmed, "Disruption or entrepreneurship is never done on an excel sheet. It may sound strange to some businessman, but you can never plan business if everything is done simply by the world of calculations (or) by simply by way of paper projections. If costs or expenses could be maintained (or) won on the basis of organizational culture or team philosophy but simply on the basis of the audit tool, if chartered accountants would tell you how to run your business, everyone would be the great management of the cost centre. If businesses could be run on excel sheets, we would be a country of billion unicorns. When I say businesses, you may call it a cult, offerings, product, tribe, cult, you can call it whatever. "
The 46-year old editor-in-chief cum media baron went on to add, “I have seen the best accountants or best auditors struggling and have seen people with no understanding of numbers manage a business efficiently. So, the first point is business cannot be built on the basis of an excel sheet. If I talk about my initial years, what made that news channel successful at that point of time? Was it an excel sheet which anybody can make? Many of you can make an excel sheet far better than me. In fact, I didn't know how to use it."
Talking about his entrepreneurial journey, he maintained, "Today, I have launched, founded, managed, and run and edited and now own two big media businesses in this country. Nobody didn't invest initially in the first network that I founded and launched in 2005. But we went to New York and managed to raise money from the world’s largest multimedia news agency at a very attractive valuation. During that time, everybody in the Indian media was shocked when that announcement was made."
Talking about his second venture, he stated, " A 'company' is a dry word. If you ask me, what Republic Media network is, the more appropriate anthropological word would be a 'Tribe' because we are a 'tribe of like-minded people'. We believe that we will defeat the 'Lutyens Media'. So, in my view, businesses, companies, organizations and workers are not won on excel sheets. They are not built in your mind but the heart, otherwise the most brilliant people will run the most successful companies. As far as the media business is concerned, the only formula that will work for you is something which works in your heart."
While praising the chairman of BW Businessworld, he maintained, "Anurag Batra is one of the earliest media entrepreneurs in this country who has shown consistency for over two decades by running innumerable brands like Exchange4Media, BW Businessworld and other digital brands. In fact, one person who can be credited for disrupting things in the media is him because around the time he was 27 he started this, two decades back."