Deepak Agarwal: Building Top-Notch Strategies That Make Exam Preps Easy | CEOInsights Vendor
Deepak Agarwal: Building Top-Notch Strategies That Make Exam Preps Easy

Deepak Agarwal: Building Top-Notch Strategies That Make Exam Preps Easy

Deepak Agarwal,   Founder

Deepak Agarwal


It takes immense determination and fortitude for one to pursue their passion and not settle for what’s fate. Not many are courageous enough to take the leap toward their dream and achieve their aspiration. But, IIT has been producing thousands of such courageous and intellectual minds who are setting new benchmarks in the business ecosystem in India and globally. One such elite alumnus of IIT Varanasi is Deepak Agarwal (Founder, Disha Publication), who stands as an epitome of perseverance and inspiration to the one who wants to shine. Right from the beginning of his career, leadership & mettle were deep-rooted within him.

Acknowledging IIT Varanasi’s contribution to his personallife and professional endeavours, Deepak admits that his tenure at the technology institute transformed him and enhanced his ability to look at things from multiple perspectives.

CEO Insights engages in an exclusive interaction with him to explore his expedition. We sincerely hope that our endeavour will be able to motivate several youngsters to promote leadership bound to integrity and ethics.

Tell us about the learnings that you acquired from IIT Varanasi.
Just like many aspirants, cracking the Joint Entrance Exam and entering IIT was like a dream come true for me. Honestly, the journey with IIT(BHU) changed my life for the best. It evolved me as an individual, professional, and leader. Although I don’t apply my academic learnings from chemical engineering to my current role, I used most of the knowledge in my initial career phase at Lupin Labs. Involved in business process reengineering at Lupin, I could implement the learnings to reduce costs and save crores for the company.

Moreover, the life lessons learned from IIT BHU are immense. At IIT, you are always pitted against highly competitive and best students. Getting to mingle with people from different walks of life and cultures equipped us to adapt to any environment, improved our
communication skills, and polished our leadership traits. The institute gave me confidence and instilled a competitive spirit, which led to a greater aspiration to embrace innovation by continuously persevering and working positively to achieve objectives. And still today, my hunger to do something new, innovative, and different has not faded.

IIT BHU gave my first spiritual lesson, i.e., follow your conscience, and go along the path of honesty and integrity. The learnings continue even today through the interaction with our alumni on various platforms.

Walk us through your educational and professional experiences gained before founding Disha Publication.
Starting my professional journey with Lupin Labs as a campus-hired candidate, I explored a unique journey. At Lupin, I worked as a Senior Production Officer and was in charge of a plant, where I could learn various aspects of production planning, trouble shooting, quality control and many more. In a couple of years, I realized that production alone did not satisfy me, and wanted to work in the different business functions in leadership roles. I decided to pursue an MBA and joined T A Pai Management Institute, Manipal.

After my studies, I was very clear to pursue entrepreneurship, which has always been my dream. Bouts of attempts from opening a computer training institute and others, I explored a lot. Eventually, I decided to leverage my IIT-JEE experience along with my father's experience as an author, which led to the ideation of Disha Publication in the year 2002.

What inspired you to establish Disha Publication?
The biggest inspiration behind my entrepreneurial journey has been my father, who has been an enterprising author. He produced more than 40 best sellers during his splendid career of 40 years. Hailing from a small village in Haryana, he emerged as the top author in Chemistry. Indeed, he was the source of inspiration for me to enter into the publishing business.

How has been your journey so far with Disha Publication?
The journey has been a mix of ups and downs. We initially began with entrance exam books for engineering and medical and witnessed great success. However, the retail market came with multifold challenges because it was extremely unorganized. That being said, we pioneered and diversified into providing white-labeled study material to coaching institutes
across India. The market immediately accepted our solution because it helpedthe institutes to professionalize their services and compete with top institutions.

Further, with the entry of Flipkart in 2009, the online business took off in a big way. We focused on the online market and became one of the Top Publishers in almost all test prep categories. The online market opened the whole Indian market to our products. Since then, there has been no turning back. Even amidst the thump of Covid, we worked aggressively and launched various products, and reduced our overheads.

We are continuing to grow further into Edtech as well by engaging students positively through recorded lectures on YouTube and social media. We are bundling Technology into a lot of our Books. I firmly believe that, 'Things can be changed favourably if you have the right intent and ability to act'.

Where is the company positioned in the industry currently?
As said earlier, we have gained and retained the position as leading publishers in the market. As a result, we were recently declared second among the Top Indian Academy publishers by the People's Choice publisher Award, which was conducted by Front List & The Federation of Indian Publishers with Nielsen as the Knowledge Partner. Recently we have collaborated with Chetan Bhagat and Boman Irani to endorse our Brand and products. Our Books are recommended by Top Faculties of India and read by Toppers.

Operating in B2B market, we serve 1500 institutes across India & Middle East. In terms of the B2C segment, we cover pre-nursery to grade XII and exams like JEE, NEET, CAT, GATE, UPSC, and other regional, state, and national government exams. Today we have 800 plus titles in English & Hindi that capture more than 75 exams. Over 100 of our books are featured among bestsellers in various categories. Today, students have less time and need focused content, therefore, our core is 'Na Kam Na Jyaada, Ye hai Hamara Vaada!!!'translating to ‘We promise to offer you sufficient material just apt for your preparation, neither less nor more’.

Deepak Agarwal, Founder, Disha Publication
Through his business, Deepak is playing a major role in helping students achieve their dreams of becoming Engineers, Doctors, Government officers, and other professionals.

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