Haresh Chawla, who has just put in his papers as Group CEO of Network18, addresses his team in a touching farewell note and asks everyone to “keep the aggression going”…
It’s almost exactly 12 years to the day I first walked into TV18 in 1999 - and it has been the most exciting and fulfilling phase of my life. I’ve now decided to move on from the Group and over the next few months, I will oversee a transition of the Group businesses.
It’s been a grand journey - from the day I joined a (then) tiny 15 crore production company with little more than big dreams... when I walked into Recondo compound - which was little more than a collection of huts, sharing my office with four others… the launch of CNBC-TV18, the acquisition of moneycontrol, the struggle and the survival challenges of the initial years... to the first signs of profits and success in 2004, and then the rapid scale up of the last five years - building India’s largest News Network with CNN IBN, Awaaz, IBN7, IBN Lokmat – India’s largest Indian online destination - Web18, one of the largest virtual commerce operations in Homeshop18 and bookmyshow.com, the acquisition and restructuring of Infomedia18 and building up of the entertainment business and the heady success of Colors and the Viacom18 joint venture, leading iconic brands like MTV, Nick, Vh1, establishing the Viacom18 Motion Pictures business... besides this, we did several other things along the way - launched Forbes and Firstpost, acquired and relaunched Newswire18... the list goes on... it’s been a heady, relentless ride from 15 crore to over 2,500 crore that we manage as a Group today.
We have taken on the biggest rivals in the business, changed the rules of the game, and more often than not came out on top! It’s rare that a professional ever gets an opportunity to play a part in creating so much, and I’ve had that honor and privilege... for that I will be forever grateful to Raghav - who ensured that I was inspired, motivated and never had to look back... he made all of it possible. Thanks, Raghav for believing in me, giving me your unflinching trust and commitment, and standing behind me in every decision.
Which brings me to what gives me the greatest joy - we are now a formidable team. Today, Network18 and Viacom18 are uniquely poised to take a leap and move into a much bigger league. I stand proud, knowing that I was part of building this fabulous and unbeatable team. Thanks to all of you - for being there... always... for giving your best when I demanded, for taking on the most ambitious and audacious goals... and now for carrying on the legacy - the Network18 way! I hand the baton over to you - you have to keep this DNA intact - and ensure that it is passed on to the team that works with you.
I take away some of the fondest memories of my life - and I shall remember all of you... there will always be a part of Network18 in me, and my chest will swell with pride whenever I see one of your brands or the 18 logo anywhere.
Keep the aggression going! My deepest thanks to you - God bless you!