Machine Maker: Transforming the Manufacturing Industry through the Power of Storytelling

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The manufacturing industry in India has played a crucial role in the country’s development, yet it has often gone unrecognized by the public. Machine Maker is changing this by bringing attention to the sector and sharing the stories of India’s leading manufacturers. With its flagship annual events, Womanufacturing and Change Makers, and its focus on telling the stories of India’s manufacturing pioneers, Machine Maker is helping to elevate the profile of the industry and transform the manufacturing sector in India through the power of storytelling.

For many years, business-to-business journalism was limited to product directories that simply provided basic information about products. RV Pandit founded the first such magazine, “Industrial Products Finder,” nearly five decades ago, which was a success and started a trend among other publishers to follow the same model. Unfortunately, many of these publishers failed to realize the full potential of journalism to create real change.

I began my career in 1996 as a sales executive for Business Press, the publisher of “Industrial Products Finder.” However, it wasn’t until my three-year stint at the first Malayalam daily, “Deepika,” that I truly came to appreciate the impact journalism could have. I was influenced by Chief Editor Fr Panthaplamthottiyil, who used his writing to bring about change in society and people’s lives, and by journalists like James PP and George Kallivayalil who courageously took on policymakers, including Chief Ministers, to better policies for the people.

In 2004, I embarked on my entrepreneurial journey and decided to focus on the manufacturing industry. I founded “Industrial Business MART,” a publication that blended journalism and product listings. The early years were challenging, and much of my time was spent establishing the business. However, the formation of our Editorial Advisory Board, led by Manoj Kabre, changed the game for us. With the support of industry experts such as Saravjit Singh, Satish PS, and Harish Pant, we were able to create a unique publication that provided value to our readers.

Despite our efforts, we were unable to make a significant impact through our publication. The rise of digital platforms, particularly handheld devices, further eroded the connection between the print media and the industrial community. In June 2017, I made the difficult decision to cease publishing “MART” even though the business was profitable, as I recognized that print media was no longer adding value to the industry. Together with Hiya Chakrabarti, I founded “The IMPALS” as a MARCOM agency to support manufacturers through content and marketing.

However, my passion for journalism and manufacturing led me to create “Machine Maker,” which filled the gap in journalism and media in the manufacturing sector. It took nearly 19 years to build a strong foundation, but today we offer multiple storytelling avenues, including print, online, digital, and on-ground events. To celebrate the strength of Indian manufacturing, we host two annual flagship events: “Womanufacturing” and “Change Makers of Indian Manufacturing.” In 2023, as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations, I will also showcase 75 innovations in Indian manufacturing.

The response from the industry to our initiatives, especially the visual storytelling we introduced in 2022, marked a major change in how Indian manufacturers view media. Throughout my journey, I’ve been inspired by the feedback and support of my readers, partners, and customers, such as Philip Samuel, Niren Anand, Amit Salunkhe, Anoj Philip, Mangesh Awate, and many others. Their encouragement has motivated me to build a strong team that can bring the remarkable stories of manufacturing companies to life.

With Machine Maker, we have initiated a storytelling revolution and are proud to see other publishers following our lead. B2B journalism in India has evolved greatly, moving beyond simple product listings to a powerful medium for showcasing manufacturers’ stories and highlighting their successes. By fostering a culture of creativity, and inspiration, and by responding to our audience’s needs, storytelling will continue to make a lasting positive impact on society.

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