Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Jagan Reddy: Sakshi valued at Rs 3,500 crores

Tuesday - Jun 03, 2008 Correspondent | Hyderabad
Do we really have to do this interview?, asks Jagan Reddy as he sits down. Ideally he would not want to be interviewed, prefers an informal, off the record conversation instead. However, he slowly opens up and answers every question asked.

Sakshi, his Telugu daily which just completed two months is reportedly doing very well, posing a threat to the well established vernacular dailies.

"It feels great, Sakshi is currently the largest circulated Telugu daily with a 13 lakh circulation. What Eenadu achieved in 30 years we have accomplished in 60 days," he says proudly. Reddy is awaiting the ABC and IRS figures to silence critics.

Circulation figures may not be easy to prove, but explaining to critics and the Opposition about where the funds for his new venture have come from, might not be easy.

"Deloitte has valued Sakshi at Rs 3,500 crores and my investors include companies like Aurobindo Pharmaceuticals, India Cements, Matrix Labs and Lanco Group, to name a few," says Reddy, adding he has always challenged wild allegations made against his investments. He sees his newspaper as number one in the Andhra Pradesh soon.

"Others will cease to matter. We want to be number one, so can't afford to be biased," he says, when asked how objective his newspaper can be with his father Dr. YS Rajashekhar Reddy heading the Congress government in AP.

Jagan explains O&M carried out a survey for the company and the results stated that 60 per cent of the people felt the product was unbiased. Another report is being carried out on customer satisfaction by AC Nielsen and based on its findings changes will be made.

Constantly justifying his funds and motives might be annoying, as everything he does or says comes under heavy scrutiny. "It's difficult being the CM's son. We don't lead ordinary lives. I don't even live in Hyderabad. Being the CM's son I chose to live in Bangalore. I'm not even in politics, yet it's the single point agenda for some people to attack me."

Why is Jagan a mystery? "I am not a mystery. I am very accessible to friends, people in my constituency and my employees. My movements have to be controlled. I'm more myself in Bangalore, but even there I have to move around with a lot of security because of the naxal threat. Being surrounded by so much security makes you conspicuous and it's embarrassing. Weekends are with my family - wife and kids."

Apart from his newspaper, his business interests include infrastructure, power projects, a cement project and an upcoming news channel to be launched in October. A public issue for Sakshi is being planned too.


Anonymous said...

Is this guy a Christian?

Anonymous said...

he is indian........