KOLKATA: It isn’t often that a publishing house sets aside over two times its marketing expenditure for a book. Unless of course, the book in question is ‘Sahara: The Untold Story’ by eminent journalist and deputy managing editor of The Mint, Tamal Bandopadhyay. Jaico Publishing House has done just that.
Not surprisingly, the Facebook page dedicated to the tome has garnered more than 8,300 likes within weeks of its appearance. Plans are underway to upload videos of the book launch apart from advertising on national television channels like CNBC and CNN IBN and in flyers and newspaper inserts in cities where the book will be launched next including Pune, Lucknow and Ahmedabad.
On why Jaico has earmarked so much moolah, ‘Sahara: The Untold Story’ publisher Akash A Shah told indiantelevision.com, “We are looking at selling around 20,000 copies in a few weeks of the launch and this book has the potential to sell 50,000-60,000 copies in the next two to three months. We are targeting serious readership.”
Shah spoke to this website on the sidelines of the book’s launch in Kolkata. “Seeing the potential of the book as compared to others, we are spending more on it, that is, around two times as compared to other books,” he added. The launch itself proved innovative with Bandopadhyay doing a mock interview with Sahara’s Subrata Roy as portrayed by Bengali actor Kaushik.
Ever since being published, the book has been at the centre of much controversy, what with Jaico and Bandopadhyay dragged to court along with a stay order on the book and a Rs 200-crore defamation suit filed. Especially after the suit, people have been even more curious about the book. The ban was lifted after Sahara withdrew its legal suit against the publisher, with the condition that the book would carry a disclaimer by Sahara Group.
Painstaking research has gone into demystifying the country’s most enigmatic and largely unlisted conglomerate, the Sahara India Pariwar, in a book that goes behind the curtains of every good, bad and ugly event that occurred in the past 30 years of the Sahara dynasty. ‘Sahara: The Untold Story’ also delves into the group’s ongoing legal battle with market regulator SEBI.
“The issue discussed in the book is set to garner attention from the financial fraternity as well as regulators and academia. Though it essentially is a tussle between the regulator and the company, it will also be viewed as a game. Hence, the publisher is seen using the gimmick of marketing to ensure that the book reaches all those concerned with the subject using all aspects of the media,” said a city-based expert.