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BW Businessworld

Chiki Sarkar's Juggernaut Strikes A Chord With Bibliophiles

In order to enhance her reader base, her firm will also introduce regional books and writers on its platform in the near term

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Chiki Sarkar, a veteran in the publishing industry, has rewritten the rules of the game when it comes to reading, writing and buying books. The Publisher & Founder of Juggernaut Books doesn't buy the idea that 'Printbook is Dead' and as her company has garnered a formidable base of bestselling books and authors. Backed by renowned investors like William Bissell, Nandan Nilekani and Neeraj Aggarwal, along with companies like Bharti Aitrel, the two-year old startup is aims to break even this year.

Talking to BW Businessworld on phone, Chiki Sarkar revealed, "I started this venture because I thought there has to be an even more interesting way of doing publishing especially in a country where you have enormous number of Smartphone users. How you make reading in a central part of people's life is something I am aspiring for. Our business model is combination of third party content and owned brand content. It is very similar to what Netflix does (with videos)."

In order to enhance her reader base, her firm will also introduce regional books and writers on its platform in the near term. It is also working on a solution wherein people who don't want to read can hear the content.

During the conversation she acknowledged that it was very tough to balance dual responsibilities as she was running the business and was doing the job of a creative head simultaneously.

It may be recalled that Chiki Sarkar started her career in publishing with the London-based company Bloomsbury Publishing. She worked there for seven years and later moved to Delhi in 2006 and joined Random House. In 2011, she took over at publishing company Penguin Books India. In 2013 publishers Penguin Books and Random House merged and she was made the India head. Finally, she set up her own publication house called Juggernaut.

Juggernaut, where Sarkar is Publisher & Founder, The three whose identities have been disclosed so far are Nandan Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys and the man behind the Adhaar biometric identification project, among other things; William Bissell, Managing Director of Fab India, and Neeraj Aggarwal, MD of Boston Consulting Group, India.

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