Paarul Chand and Ranjit Monga, Founder, Brightlite Communications
Living on the edge
Even as they resolved to switch over from journalism to becoming entrepreneurs, Paarul Chand and Ranjit Monga had their best of intentions driving them into the venture. The duo, aware of their potential to bring about a social change, wanted to address the burgeoning issues facing society. And it was this common vision that made Brightlite Communications a tangible reality.
Brightlite offers cutting edge television and filmmaking services for the production of documentaries, corporate films, video news releases, audio books and audio-visuals. Established in 2001, the company has been offering expert media consultancy and training services to clients across the print and electronic media.
“While we write content for brochures, annual reports and newsletters, we also compose song lyrics. Our clients include prestigious international organizations and companies, like the European Union, Oracle, Global Health Advocates, World Vision India and TB Action. We have also worked for SAP, WHO, UNICEF, Global Fund for Aids, TB and Malaria, Aksh Optifibre and Indian Oil Corporation,” said Chand.
It was only recently that the company introduced 10 additional areas of services and divided them into two independent groups to suit the interests and preferences of the employees and the customers. These new services range from social research media and life skills training, to training and educating for media, writing services and editorial consultancies. This apart, the company also launched Bright Lives Foundation for People, which operates with the purpose of raising funds for people threatened by terrorism, especially women and children. It also aims to develop a knowledge bank on social demographics through research on social trends and social sector with primary focus on health, women and children.
Ask them why they decided to become entrepreneurs and they say, “We have already worked with the country’s top media houses before striking out on our own. As reporters, we were exposed to the widening gap between the media and the troubled social sectors of the country, and took it as an opportunity to develop a communicational link to ensure social issues get the required attention. The desire to pursue and highlight issues that mattered to us as journalists encouraged us to become entrepreneurs. This also helped us realise our full potential as entrepreneurs, even in areas where one may not have been trained in,” said Monga.
However, to foray into a field as challenging as this was hardly like a walking over a cake, and they did not expect it to be otherwise anyways. “It was difficult for us to convince ourselves that we are not journalists anymore, and as entrepreneurs we deserved to be paid a certain amount for work. We learnt everything from scratch. From running the company and making invoices to filing tax and maintaining a staff, we did everything and in keeping with our financial constraints,” recalled the duo. The second most intimidating challenge was when we were launching our new product, the video news release. Chand and Monga set themselves the task of educating the clients as well as the electronic media and convincing them that the product was very viable. Besides, the fact that the venture involved a huge risk was also a little discouraging initially. The duo is very committed to conducting their work ethically, and it took them a while to educate clients about the process of media engagement and advantages of getting it done the right way.
Brightlite came across with its first turning point in 2002, when the company was appreciated for its work and started receiving additional assignments for making documentaries and corporate films. However, the founders believe that the real turning point is now, when the company has added a basket of new services and restructured the company at the management level to distinctly represent two verticals.
It was the drive to make a difference in the lives of people and for themselves, the high of delivering quality work and the thrill of breaking new grounds that kept Chand and Monga determined about their endeavour.
“Our services, draw on our experiences and training as journalists. Our clients’ trust in our services and in us and know that we will deliver the best quality for the best rates. We have therefore also started offering add on services like event management and content writing. We are ahead along the innovation road and constantly upgrade our service basket to ensure we adapt and keep up with the changing environment and the rising needs of the entrepreneurial world. The fact that we still have all the clients we had started off with is a reward in itself,” said Chand.
It has been an exciting, wonderful and challenging journey for Brightlite Communications for the last 8 years. And now, the company is stepping out to add new services and management structures. Several specific initiatives are being independently launched.
Apart from that several communication and media consultancy services, Brightlite will now make available a writing hot shop which includes writing booklets, lyrics, corporate brochures and annual reports to name a few. Other services like filmmaking, video news releases, public relations in social sector, PR consulting, media advocacy, editorial consulting for media houses, anchoring TV shows & events and production of audio books, among other will be independently managed by Monga.
For the budding entrepreneurs, the duo has sterling tips to offer. “It is impossible to be an entrepreneur and not love what you are doing. Ensure that you have mentors who will advise you and help you cut short the process of learning the essentials of running a company. Moreover, commitment and adopting ethical practices will pay you rich dividends.”