New Delhi: Maheshwar Peri, publisher of Outlook magazine and president, Outlook Publishing India Pvt. Ltd, is launching his own publishing venture that will bring out magazines in the careers and education space.
While Peri will own 90% stake in the new firm—Pathfinder Publishing Pvt. Ltd— 10% will be held by Rajesh Jain, one of the country’s best-known Internet entrepreneurs and founder of Mumbai-based Netcore Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
Careers focus: Outlook Publishing president Maheshwar Peri. Sanjay Sharma / Mint
Pathfinder Publishing’s first title, the name for which hasn’t been finalized, will hit the news-stands by April.
Peri, 39, who said he would continue to be the top executive at Outlook, defended the decision to launch the new venture amid an economic slowdown. “Good and robust business plans have a propensity to withstand a bad business environment. The economic downturn could have come after I launched the magazine too. It is good that it has come up before the launch, so that I can make more tighter plans.”
“I’m not leaving Outlook in the foreseeable future,” Peri said in response to an emailed questionnaire. He added there was no conflict of interest and that the Outlook group would distribute and market Pathfinder’s magazines.
Outlook Publishing is owned by the Rajan Raheja Group, a diversified entity with interests in cement, petrochemicals, hospitality, construction and media, through direct holdings and joint ventures.
Peri said it was too early to talk about other offerings by Pathfinder.
Explaining his decision to focus on the careers space, he said: “For more than 95% of India, the flight to prosperity comes through good decisions on education and careers. And these subjects are the least informed and, in fact, misinformed... As of now, I would be focusing on education, careers and competitive examinations only.”
Jain, who had recently invested in Indian languages publishing house New Horizon Media Pvt. Ltd, said the investment in Peri’s venture was among a total of 13 investments he has made through his investment firm Emergic Venture Capital Pvt. Ltd, whose combined value is some Rs100 crore. “The next generation of publishing will have to adopt a 360-degree strategy to reach its consumer—through print, Internet and mobile. I’m hoping to work with Mahesh on the Internet and mobile side,” Jain added.