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Playboy: The Success Story Of Hefner’s Empire

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Do you know about the most read men’s magazine which has been popular for more than four decades? The sales for a single issue of this magazine hit seven million by the early 1970s. Sounds familiar, right? Every other man was holding a copy this magazine back then. Any guesses? We are speaking about the most sold magazine of all times Playboy. Hugh Hefner and his remarkable magazine Playboy solely changed the story of the adult entertainment industry and became a multimillion dollar business endeavour that expanded to incorporate television, web ventures, clubs and more. The magazine was a game changer in the era of ‘70s where people were more conscious of what is being displayed and what’s not.

Playboy’s founding story

Hugh Hefner, the founder of the epic magazine had first shown his interest in publication at an early age. In high school he founded his school’s newspaper taking it as an opportunity, young Hefner illustrated his own comic book, School Daze. Although he had a high IQ of 152, Hefner was never really spirited about school, in general. However, after completing his schooling, Hefner joined the United States Army. Later, he went on to attend classes at the Chicago Art Institute. After two years at the Art Institute, Hefner attended the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana, where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in the year 1950. It was in the year 1952, Hefner started working as a cartoonist for the famous Esquire magazine. While working there, he was turned down for a $ 5 raise, he took it to heart and decided to quit his job at the publication. He went on to venture out on his own and the rest we know is history! In 1953, Hefner founded Playboy magazine using his $ 600 bucks and several thousand more he borrowed including $ 1,000 from his mom.

The rise and fall and rise of Playboy

The first issue of Playboy published in December 1953. The magazine featured nude photos of Marilyn Monroe and sold over 50,000 copies. As we all know, controversial stuff sells fast! Playboy had its strategies right and by the year 1958, the magazine’s annual profit was $ 4 million and Hugh Incredible Hefner had skyrocketed to fame. Over the years, apart from controversial stuff, Playboy’s publication of writers including Ray Bradbury, Ian Fleming, Joseph Heller, Jack Kerouac and Margaret Atwood became famous overnight. Also, Miles Davis was the magazine’s first interview. Other interviews included Fidel Castro, Frank Sinatra, Marlon Brando and the then presidential candidate Jimmy Carter, who confided that he had committed adultery in his heart. John Lennon before dying had spoken to Playboy in 1980 as well. Playboy became known for its sexually explicit content. By 1970, Hugh Hefner had gone from beginning an entrepreneurial endeavour in his own home to being the founder of a major corporation. The distribution of the magazine was extensively done and copies were selling at rates of seven million copies per month. The year 1972 earned Hefner a twelve million dollar profit.

The magazine’s monthly distribution was reaching new heights. Yes! An enormous 7 million issues were sold in 1971. By that time, nearly one quarter of  American young lads were buying or subscribing every month, according to a source. However, post that, Playboy saw a downfall in the late ‘80s and the franchise was struggling hard to reach out to the people. In the year 1994, Hefner established the Playboy Jazz Film Festival, funded by Playboy. The festival was the first showcase on the West Coast for rare jazz films and was free to the public. The franchise was slowly and steadily gaining its pace. Nevertheless, Hefner’s brainchild was back with a bang in the early 2000s with the release of his reality television show on E!. The program The Girls Next Door portrayed the lives of his three blonde girlfriends at the Playboy Mansion. The series was a super hit and doubled the popularity of Hefner between the years 2005 to 2010.

In the year 2017, Hefner died in Los Angeles at the age of 91. At the time of his death, Hefner’s global brand had an estimated net worth of at least $ 110 million. As of now, Playboy earns most of its money by licensing the bunny brand for a variety of products including liquor, clothing, fragrances, jewellery and bath products.

Cooper Hefner, Hefner’s son and the Chief Creative Officer of Playboy Enterprises, said in a statement …my father lived an exceptional and impactful life as a media and cultural pioneer and a leading voice behind some of the most significant social and cultural movements of our time in advocating free speech, civil rights and sexual freedom. He defined a lifestyle and ethos that lie at the heart of the Playboy brand, one of the most recognizable and enduring in history.

Watch the success story of Playboy here,

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Top 10 Brands Owned By Tata Group

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Top 10 Brands Owned By Tata Group

Tata Group is another of India’s oldest brands which was founded in 1868 by Jamsetji Tata.  Tata Group began as a trading company and has since then diversified into almost every major industry.  The Tata group has a rich history of having dealt in almost every major industry which includes software as well as heavy machinery.  Tata Group is one of the largest employers in the world and currently employs more than 7,00,000 people across the world.  Over the years, Tata Group has meticulously committed itself to delivering high quality goods and services and the Tata brand is now synonymous with sturdiness and high quality.

Let us have a look at the top ten brands owned by Tata Group.

1) Tata Steel

Tata Steel is the second largest steel company in India, next only to the state owned Steel Authority Of India (SAIL.)  Tata Steel operates in 26 countries with key operations in India, Netherlands and United Kingdom and employs around 80,500 people.

2) Tata Consultancy Services

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) is an Information Technology (IT) servicing and consulting company  and operates in 149 locations across 46 countries.  In 2015, TCS was ranked 64th overall in the Forbes World’s Most Innovative Companies ranking.  

3)  Tata Power

Tata Power is a company which generates, transmits and distributes power in India.  Tata Power has an installed electricity generation capacity of 10,577 MW, it is India’s largest integrated power company.

4)  Tata Motors

One of India’s largest automakers, Tata Motors products include passenger cars, trucks, vans, coaches, buses, sports cars, construction equipment and military vehicles.  

5) Jaguar  Land Rover

Jaguar Land Rover Limited is a subsidiary of Tata Motors and is the luxury car maker brand of the Tata Group.  Jaguar Land Rover has been a subsidiary of Tata Motors since they acquired Jaguar Cars Limited and Land Rover from Ford in 2008. 

ALSO READ: Top Ten Long Standing Indian Brands

6) Titan

Titan is a consumer brand which mainly focuses on manufacturing watches, eyewear and jewellery.  It commenced operations in 1984 under the name Titan Watches Limited.  In 1994, Titan diversified into jewellery with Tanishq and subsequently into eyewear with Titan Eyeplus.  Titan has built a reputation as a reliable Indian watchmaker and their products are popular with the Indian masses.

7) Voltas

Voltas is a home appliances company which specializes in air conditioning and cooling technologies.  The company was incorporated on 6 September 1954 in Mumbai.  It was a collaboration between Tata Sons and Volkart Brothers.

8) Vistara

Vistara is an Indian airline service which is a joint venture between Tata Sons and Singapore Airlines.  The airline had carried more than two million passengers by June 2016 and as of May 2019, has a 4.7% share of the domestic carrier market, making it the 6th largest domestic airline.

9) Taj Hotels

Taj Hotels is a chain of luxury hotels and a subsidiary of the Indian Hotels Company Limited, which is a subsidiary of Tata Group.  The company operates a total of 100 hotels and hotel-resorts, with 84 across India and 16 in other countries, including Bhutan, Malaysia, Maldives, Nepal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, UAE, Taj Hotels UK, USA and Zambia.

10) Tata Sky

Tata Sky is an Indian satellite broadcast provider and is a joint venture between the Tata Group and The Walt Disney Company with Temasek Holdings as a minor partner.  Tata Sky currently offers a total of 601 channels, 495 standard definition channels and 99 high definition channels and services, along with other many active services.

Let us know if we have missed any other famous Tata Group brands and we would cover them in another article!

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5 Cricketers Who Are Entrepreneurs

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5 Cricketers Who Are Entrepreneurs

Cricket as a sport in India commands an unrivaled attention almost bordering on zealous love.  It is often compared as a religion and the cricketers often metaphorically referred to as gods.  No other sport comes close to the kind of coverage cricket has in India and it is easy to find small cricket matches going on in the dusty lanes which brings together people of all ages.  The sport brings together people regardless of their circumstances.  

India always produced some outstanding cricketers and boasts about names like Sachin Tendulkar, Saurav Ganguly, M.S. Dhoni and Virat Kohli to name a few.  While these cricketers are legends in their own rights at the game of cricket, they have conquered the 22 yards pitch, not many might know they are equally able entrepreneurs.

Let us have a look at five cricketers who are also entrepreneurs.

1) Sachin Tendulkar

Often referred to as the ‘God Of Cricket,’ Sachin Tendulkar is arguably the best batsman of this generation, to have walked on this planet.  While Sachin had conquered many records on the field, he has also established a career outside of cricket since his retirement from the game.  Sachin has investments in several brands and is one of the main investors in Smartron, a technology based company.  His other investments include brands like Musafir, Smaaash Entertainment, and owns a string of restaurants to his name. Sachin is also the co owner of Kochi Indian Super League (ISL) franchise Kerala Blasters FC.

2) M.S. Dhoni

Mahendra Singh Dhoni or ‘Captain Cool’ as he is referred to by his fans, Dhoni is responsible for winning the Cricket World Cups in both the fifty overs and T20 formats.  Mahendra Singh Dhoni stepped into the world of business, by buying a Supersport World Championship team, Mahi Racing Team India, which is co owned by Akkineni Nagarjuna.  Dhoni is also the co owner of Chennaiyin FC with Abhishek Bachchan in ISL and also owns Ranchi Rays in Hockey India League with Sahara India Pariwar.  Dhoni also launched a lifestyle brand, ZEVEN, and owns the footwear section of the Brand. Recently, he joined hands with the app Run Adams by buying 25% stake in the startup.  

3) Virat kohli

Virat Kohli is the current captain of the Indian Cricket Team and is one of the best players of the current generation.  Virat is also one of the world’s most famous sports persons along with the likes of Leo Messi, Christiano Ronaldo, Roger Federer and LeBron James.  Virat is an astute businessman apart from being the captain of the cricket team.  His first business investment was for FC Goa in ISL, where he co owned the football team franchise with a vision to grow football in India.  He also launched the youth fashion brand Wrogn with Anjana Reddy to produce casual wear for Men and tied up with Myntra Fashion, as well as Shopper Stop to promote the brand.  Kohli also holds shares in the London based Tech Startup, Sport Convo, which is a social networking site for sports lovers to talk about their favourite stars.  His urge to make India fit, drove him to create the fitness brand Chisel, in association with Franchise India. Chisel is a chain of Gym and Fitness centres spread across various regions of the country.

4) Virender Sehwag

Often referred to as the ‘Nawab Of Najafgarh,’  Virender Sehwag was the bane of bowlers across the world because of his daredevil batting techniques.  Sehwag owns a restaurant in Delhi’s Moti Nagar since 2006 and is named as ‘Sehwag’s Favourites.’  He started a school, Sehwag International School in Jhajjar, Haryana.  It has world class facilities that aim at a 360 degree development of students.  They are rated as one of the best schools of India with a sports academy, where Sehwag coaches kids personally, during his off time.

5) Yuvraj Singh

Yuvraj Singh is best remembered for smashing six sixes in a single over against England and used to entertain fans thoroughly with his batting and fielding skills.  The former Indian cricketer, owns a sports based e commerce store sports365.in including investments in Vyomo, Moovo, Black With Orange, Cartisan, Heathians, Educart and Sportybeans.  Other than that, Yuvi has also started YouWeCan, a startup which has helped hundreds of cancer patients battle their ordeal. Yuvraj was himself a cancer survivor and beat the disease successfully in the past.  

 

These cricketers have won multiple accolades for India on the international stage and have also shined in their personal lives by setting examples.  Let us know if any other cricketers should also deserve a mention in this list!

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Storage For Rent: This Startup Idea Is Seeing A Huge Demand During COVID-19 Pandemic

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Storage For Rent: This Startup Idea Is Seeing A Huge Demand During COVID-19 Pandemic

If you could travel six months back in time and tell yourself how the world would look now, you might have dismissed it as a hoax.  The world changed suddenly when the COVID-19 virus broke out and started spreading across the world.  The virus which manifests in the form of a flu before attacking the respiratory system currently has no vaccine.  This forced governments across the world and India included, to enforce a strict mandatory nationwide lockdown.  

The lockdown was initially announced in India for just three weeks and many businesses and startups never expected it to go beyond a month.  However, the lockdown is still continuing albeit with a few relaxations, but many industries continue to be badly affected by it as they saw zero revenue in the last three months.  Many organisations and businesses have made the shift to remote work as their offices remain to be closed for fear of contracting the COVID-19 virus.  

As software companies continue to declare work from home for the foreseeable future, many employees are looking to return back home from technology hubs like Bengaluru and Hyderabad so as to save money on huge rents in the metropolitan cities considering their offices are not opening anytime soon.

ALSO READ: How The Events Industry Is Impacted By The COVID-19 Pandemic

This is where a unique concept where companies offering storage spaces for long term rent is seeing a huge spurt in demand.  As software employees in Bengaluru are slowly vacating their accommodations to move back home in order to save on rental expenses, they have no place to store their personal belongings.  Firms like SafeStorage, Storagians, StowNest Storage and MyRaksha, which provide the service (storage for rent,) have seen a spike in clients and quotation requests.  Even some gyms and restaurants, both of which are yet to reopen completely, are offering their facilities for storage in order to reduce their own rental expenses.

ALSO READ: How The COVID-19 Pandemic Affected Startup Investments And  IPOs In 2020

These storage firms offer facilities like pickup services, CCTV monitoring and individual locker facilities apart from providing insurance coverage against theft, natural calamities and fire.  Ramesh Madisetty, co founder of SafeStorage, says “We have 13 warehouses with 1.16 lakh sq ft space in Bengaluru.  We have signed up for another 27,000 sq ft facility near Whitefield.  There is a 10x jump in enquiries due to Covid-19 , from 30 to 300 now (sic.)”

Another company named Storagians, which offers storage for rent in Bengaluru has already run out of storage space and are having to turn away customer requests.  Prasanna Kumar, founder of Storagians says “Unfortunately, we are turning down customers’ requests due to the non availability of slots sic.)”

The average monthly rent is based on the volume of goods.  While goods accommodated in 1BHK are charged a monthly rental of Rs. 2,500-3,500 and it will be Rs. 4,500-5,000 for 2BHK.  As more and more enterprising people are embracing this concept, many others are racing against time to get their own facilities up so they can offer storage space for rent.  This concept will continue to see a huge demand as long as companies keep working remotely.

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