Business Today 14th January 2018 - Page 122

The Best Management Lesson I Learnt ILLUSTRATION BY RAJ VERMA collapsed in one split second. It was our first exposure to what would be a series of setbacks. In retrospect, that was one of the best things to have happened to us. Such a big setback, that too at the onset, taught us the importance of being able to find opportunity in adversity. Deal-making was core to us; so, we started working with new-age entrepre- neurs who were coming up in large numbers at the time. We started helping the start-ups raise funds via the non-IPO route, by tapping PE and VC funds, which was then a rarity in India. As there was hardly anyone else focussing on this, we established a strong presence and quickly became the market leaders. B eyond Business: Even then and for the next few years, we were very deal-oriented, jump- ing from one transaction to another. We were doing well, and that was all that mattered. Revenues jumped from `28 lakh in the first year (1996) to `11 crore in 2000. Things were looking great – the focus was on the here and now and to maximise profitabil- ity soon. It was not like we were not thinking about the future. We were and with big plans around it, but we could not look beyond the next three to four years. We were building a business but not an organisation. However, the biggest jolts come when you least expect them. The markets turned bad, then 9/11 122 I BUSINESS TODAY I January 14 I 2018