India has a rich culture of imparting knowledge and education dating back to 5000 BC. From Gurukuls to modern-day schools and now online classes, the education system has evolved drastically.
The industry contributes to India’s economic development not only by promoting learning and education but also by creating employment for more than 1.2 million people. The Indian publishing industry was estimated to be approximately INR 500 billion in 2019, with a growth potential of INR 800 billion by 2024.
Founded on October 2nd 2006, Target Publications Pvt Ltd is one of the leading academic publishing houses based out of Mumbai, aiding in educating more than 6 lakh students each year across the country.
What started as the publication of one title back in 2006, after 16 years, has increased to a publication of 500 titles ranging from pre-primary to competitive exams today.
A team of 200+ passionate people at Target Publications are working towards the vision to transform lives through learning by creating content with real-life applications that is simple to understand. At present, they are catering to around 6,000 educational institutions and more than 1,000 retail stores across the state of Maharashtra.
A chartered accountant by qualification, Alekh Huddar has always had a deep passion for education. With an aim to create a wider impact, he started his own publishing house in 2013.
Alekh shares, “With books, there are no boundaries, and we can reach lakhs of students each year and create an impact in their lives.”
He went on to join the Board of Directors of Target Publications after his publishing house was acquired by Target Publications at the end of 2018. And today, Target Publications is a leading brand in Maharashtra when it comes to academic books.
In the academic publishing industry, it is purely the quality of content that acts as the biggest differentiating factor and what adds value to any client. With the error-free and feature-loaded books by Target Publications, their direct customers, who are mainly coaching institutes, do not need to develop their own content or study material.
Target also offers personalisation of books by white labelling, which includes changing the cover page with that of the institutes.
Talking about the success of Target Publications, Mr Alekh explains, “From a business standpoint, I think success for any firm, including ours, is defined by the growth in the number of customers and the repetition of customers.”
Target Publications have grown multifold in both aspects in the past decade. They have also been awarded Gold certificates from the e-commerce giants like Amazon and Flipkart.
The team at Target is a firm believer in delivering what they commit. Being smaller in size gives them an advantage over others, but they plan on retaining this even as they grow bigger.
The speed of service and flexibility are the major differentiators for Target. Alekh says,
2017 – Target started selling books online on e-commerce marketplaces. Since then, there has been no looking back. Today, we are one of the leading sellers in the book category on Amazon & Flipkart.
2018 – Acquisition of a leading publishing house in Maharashtra, which increased the number of titles published by Target and added to its revenues.
2020 – Launch of Target’s mobile app called Quill – The Padhai App during the Covid pandemic to deliver content to students.
2022 – Purchase of two Print on Demand (POD) machines to cater to the increasing demand for customised books by customers.
Ever since the inception of Target, their agile team has ensured providing accurate and high-quality content in a timely manner. At Target, they also hold high regard for committed financial payments, right from salary to vendor payments. Their ethic of treating every order with equal priority irrespective of the grade of the customer has surely led to the success of the firm.
Sharing their future plans, Alekh says, “The next five years, we believe, are going to be defined by how well we respond to the National Education Policy 2020 (NEP).
The education structure in our country is changing, and we want to be the first responders when it comes to content by publishing books aligned with NEP to make the most of this opportunity.”
With content customisation as per the client’s needs, the team at Target is aiming to consolidate their position in its existing markets over the next year.
With a view to expanding their horizon, reaching out to markets outside Maharashtra and catering to a greater number of students, they are looking to demonstrate their brand in various exhibitions across the country.
Every journey has some setbacks. In its 16 years long journey, Target, too, had faced many challenges. Alekh shares, “We have been fortunate enough to have a team that sticks together like a family. The joint effort of the team, sincerity to our work & agility to respond to changing business environment helped us sail through all challenges.”