Suraj Kumar is a young entrepreneur from Dehradun. He is the founder of the Dehradun-based weekly magazine The Dehradun Street. He has been appreciated by the chief minister of Uttarakhand as well for his achievement at such an early age. We got a chance to have a conversation with him. Let's hear the story of his success in his own words.
First of all, I would like to congratulate you for the huge success of your venture “The Dehradun Streets”. Let us know when did you start it and what motivated you to start a weekly newspaper?
Thank you for giving me this platform to express myself. Talking about the newspaper I started it on 5 September 2015. I always had a flair for advertising and had an aspiration to do something in the same field. After getting an opportunity of working with an ad agency,my love of advertising reached a different level and I realised which path to walk along.
Now tell us something about your family background and your education.
Mine is a doctors' family wherein my father is an ophthalmologist, brother is an orthopaedic doctor and my sister-in-law is a paediatrician and my mother is a teacher. I completed my schooling from “Ann Mary School” Dehradun. Then I went to IIPM for an integrated course of BBA and MBA in marketing & HR.
You pursued Masters in Business Administrations. You would have got a white collar job but why and when did you decide to start your own venture?
Yes definitely. Even I was working before coming into this field. But fate had something better for me. After completing my college I did an internship with an ad agency (Ogilvy & Mather), for four months. After that, I came back to my hometown and started working with Tupperware in Selaqui in the purchase. While working and interning with different agencies I got an idea about different things of business and after completing a year with Tupperware I thought I should be doing something else of my own…That's it…It started from there. I left the job, took a small break and decided to start with a newspaper.
Did you face any kind of issue in starting days? Did your family support you in your decision?
Yes, every business has problems and the initial years are the days of struggle. Yes, my family supported me in my venture and is helping me in whatever way they can. It is because of them only, I was able to complete a year and am standing here right now.
Have you faced any kind of problem in the term for revenue?
Revenue is, of course, the most important thing to establish a business.But as I told before as well everything takes time and we will have to wait for the right time to come.
How do you convince your potential clients to advertise with you?
It’s very difficult to convince the clients who have already had an experience with the established local and national brands of the newspaper. But not comparing with the others and telling them about the core values & deliverables, I have been able to convince most of my clients.
Any suggestion or message for those entrepreneurs who are willing to start their own businesses?
I would like to congratulate all of them who have already started doing something on their own and would suggest them just to listen to their hearts and do things as per their wish. I would want to tell them not to think about what the others are saying.