Earlier this month, BizAsia marked a decade in the business. In any industry, there are inevitable changes that take place. Having been at the core of the British Asian media news network for 10 years and almost three years in entertainment, founders Raj and Lakh Baddhan have remained unique in the UK. As the one-stop media news portal, BizAsia continues to provide exclusive and credible stories to the readers. With BizAsia Showbiz already expanding and making it’s mark, it certainly seems that the last 10 years have cemented an exciting forthcoming decade for the brand. Read on as both brothers discuss and relive their memories and reveal their aspirations for the future of BizAsia.
1) How does it feel reaching the milestone of 10 years?
Raj: An overwhelming feeling and wondering where the past ten years have gone!! The past ten years have been some of the best personally for me to nourish it and make it a global brand for Asian media and entertainment industry and consumers. Winning the Best Website gong at the Asian Media Awards last year signaled how far the site has come and how much we’ve grown. To have a small team of writers and being efficient in breaking stories round the clock is something credible for an independent company like us.
Lakh: It’s been an incredible climb to where we are today. We can still remember the day we launched our website, the interaction with our readers and the feedback we received then, continues today and this is better than anything else. Without our readers we wouldn’t have achieved this milestone. Winning the Best Website award reflects how wonderfully the brand has evolved.
2) How would you describe your BizAsia journey?
Raj: Its been quite an experience! We (myself and Lakh Baddhan) started off the site just after university in 2005 and was meant to be something as a hobby and an interest away from work hours. Then when we started putting more time into it and seeing the results, that’s what made us more determined to expand it further. It’s a learning curve with plenty of things I have learned that I did not even know about but my passion and drive, along with the team, has brought the site to the level we are at.
Lakh: The dedication and enthusiasm shown by us has shown what can be achieved. We work on this website along with other full time work, however the rise of the website is down to several key ingredients; passion, resilience and teamwork. Today, the team continues to grow and taking the website to the next level.
[quote]One highlight has to be the launch of our Showbiz website in 2012. It gave our media website a new angle, it offered readers another reason to visit BizAsia.[end_quote]
3) Can you share your earliest memory?
Raj: Earliest memory is when hit the ‘PUBLISH’ button on launch date in January 2005. I remember, it was a Sunday evening. The following day, on Monday, we received a huge number of emails from the industry applauding us on the site and encouraged us with exclusive news stories, press releases and moreover advertising campaigns to push the site further.
Lakh: Like Raj, I still remember the Sunday evening we launched our websites. In our bedroom, after 6 months of planning and designing a new website, we were ready.
4) Is there any one experience/occurrence you can highlight in the 10 years that you will always remember as particularly poignant?
Raj: Oooh too many to point one! But i reckon when we got our first advertising campaign in 2006 – a year after launching the site. This was certainly a significant time for us and that’s when we thought this is the “real-deal” and ‘BizAsia‘ is definitely something! I think at that time, we owed it to our advertisers and thousands of readers to ensure they were getting a good service with regular updates and exclusive stories.
Lakh: One highlight has to be the launch of our Showbiz website in 2012. It gave our media website a new angle, it offered readers another reason to visit BizAsia. The wonderful work our Showbiz Editor Amrita Tanna is truly commendable, with all her professional and hard work, it has helped the BizAsia brand become more than just a standard website.
[quote]…as I have demonstrated on BizAsia over the past ten years, anything is possible through who you know. The kind of stories and moreover the reliability of sources, is what gets your content talking![end_quote]
5) Being in the industry for so long, is there any one lesson you can share you’ve learnt in the 10 years?
Raj: Its quite simple! Just being yourself and letting your work speak for itself. Being a Midlands lad that I am, it is a lot more difficult to get first-hand information from the media hub that is primarily based in London. However, as i have demonstrated on BizAsia over the past ten years, anything is possible through who you know. The kind of stories and moreover the reliability of sources, is what gets your content talking!
Lakh: It’s all about the content! One lesson we’ve (me and Raj) have agreed on is regardless of how the website looks, content is king. If we continued to have original and interesting content, readers will always visit BizAsia. There are so many websites out there, to standout amongst the rest, we ensure the content you read on the sites are of original content.
6) Where do you see yourselves/BizAsia in the next 10 years?
Raj: Judging by the magnitude of things we have in store for the next 18 months, the next decade seems like quite a distant. But, ten years down the line… Let’s see…don’t underestimate the BizAsia brand!
Lakh: We continue to work on new ways to engage the readers, it’s about targeting readers around the world on all sorts of devices. We have some exciting plans in the coming months, and know it’ll take our website to the next level. I believe in steady progress, as the old saying goes “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” – so lets wait and see!
[quote]A good brand is only reflected by a good product. We feel the BizAsia brand continues to grow from strength to strength[end_quote]
7) How would you explain the evolution of the brand of BizAsia in this decade up until now?
Raj: Still much more working required to enhance the awareness of the brand but for a ten year-old brand, BizAsia has grown to become the one-stop place for UK Asian media news and soon will be one of the first to visit for all things entertainment too!
Lakh: A good brand is only reflected by a good product. We feel the BizAsia brand continues to grow from strength to strength as the websites attract more awareness. The BizAsia brand is now more credible than ever.
8) What has been your ultimate goal and has it changed over the years?
Raj: Ultimate goal for me has always been focus on UK Asian media news, plus other territories as an add-on. The showbiz segment was added in 2012 after much demand by our readers who wanted a similar efficient news breaking service at a local level.
Lakh: My ultimate goal in life is always to give your best shot and make it succeed in whatever I do. This is the same moral I have applied to BizAsia. Regardless of whether the site continued as just a media website, I wanted a website which offers readers something that they can’t find anywhere else.
[quote]BizAsia is not just a website, we’re a family – together we’ll make it one of the biggest brands in our industry. [end_quote]
9) What do you feel is BizAsia’s unique appeal to the readers now, with the development and popularity of social media?
Raj: We’re quite clear in providing Media and Showbiz at a fast pace. Speed, accuracy and exclusive stories is what our readers thrive on and we’re please to say that with our growing BizAsia team, there will be even more updates than previously.
Lakh: In today’s world, it’s very important to offer our news stories on as many digital channels as possible, this includes social media. We currently offer our stories on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. We also have a dedicated YouTube channel. We need to continue to make our stories available on as many social media websites as possible.
10) Any final words?
Raj: This is just the start of the journey for BizAsia… Thank you to our readers and advertisers for their support. 2015, is a huge year for us and as a part of our tenth year, BizAsia will undergo some of the biggest changes, which we know our readers will welcome. See and believe!
Lakh: We want our readers to continue to ride the journey with us – thank you for all your support. BizAsia is not just a website, we’re a family – together we’ll make it one of the biggest brands in our industry.