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Arindam Chaudhuri, Editor-in-Chief, 4Ps B&M Chief Consulting Editor's Desk
Rajita Chaudhuri
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The mercurial man has transformed the outdoor media industry in India to world class standards... 4Ps B&M profiles the quasi-legend and his corporation

Yogesh Lakhani is a name synonymous with a talent powerhouse and one who embodies profound dedication and commitment to his work. His story is truly inspiring and has the potential to make one realize that indeed, nothing is impossible if one has firm determination and conviction in one’s heart. He is the epitome of a rags to riches story and somebody the industry now looks up to. But it was not always like that, with Lakhani’s initial years being right out of a Leo Tolstoy novel.

Lakhani’s remarkable journey started the day he completed his SSC (12th grade) exams. While he tried considerably to get work in respectable firms, none would employ him due to various reasons. Dejected, but still with a never say die attitude, Lakhani decided to do whatever it would take to start earning his living. The first job he got was of a mere slide delivery boy. The slides he used to carry were from media agencies to printing and publishing units and vice versa. He also fixed broken banners. Industry insiders recall how Lakhani would be seen spending nights at the suburban railway stations in Mumbai just to ensure perfection while repairing some or the other railway board. The pay was tough, the work was tougher, the will to succeed was the toughest.

But Lakhani’s experience was providing him invaluable insights into the workings of the outdoor media industry. And that’s when Lakhani decided that he no more wanted to work for others and decided to branch out.

In 1990, he took up a small table space with just one office staff and started selling billboard space. Things started developing rapidly when he acquired all the railway billboard sites of one of the prime suburbs of Mumbai. By 1995, he was selling around 200 banner sites around Mumbai. That’s when Lakhani decided that he needed to formalise the endeavour into a professional corporate structure. He took up a large office space at the Borivali suburb of Mumbai and kick-started his venture, Bright Advertising Agency (now known as Bright Outdoor Media Pvt. Ltd).

With an initial professional team of 25 members trained and groomed by Lakhani, Bright not only grew within Mumbai, but expanded throughout India in quick time, with offices coming up initially in Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad, and subsequently in various other cities of India. Today, you can find Bright’s headquarters in the plush commercial area of Andheri alongside offices of famous production houses like Yashraj films, T-Series and Balaji Motion Pictures etc.

Lakhani shares with 4Ps B&M that it was just pure conviction to his work that made him work relentlessly everyday to make his dream possible. Today, Lakhani is considered a visionary before his time and the godfather of the outdoor media industry, who introduced global benchmarks in outdoor media advertising and marketing. So the next time you see a billboard, check the legend at the bottom. If it says “Bright”, well, take a bow...

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