Harvard Business Review Launches New Indian Edition

Look out, Bollywood. There’s a new player in the South Asian media market—the Harvard Business Review (HBR).

The Harvard-owned management journal is launching its 11th international edition in Mumbai, home to the Hindi-language film industry.

Harvard Business School Publishing (HBSP), the review’s not-for-profit parent company, announced last week that it would team with the India Today Group, a media conglomerate, on the South Asian venture.

The South Asian monthly will contain close to the same content as the U.S. edition but will run regional advertising, according to HBR spokeswoman Cathy Olofson.

The debut of HBR South Asia is slated for Oct. 16, with a kick-off event in Mumbai featuring several CEOs of top Indian companies.

The South Asia edition joins HBR versions printed in China, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Poland, Russia, Spain, and Taiwan—as well as Spanish- and Portuguese-language Latin American publications based in Chile.

Although less than 5 percent of the Indian population—which totals nearly 1.1 billion—speaks English fluently, HBS South Asia will be published in English, making it the first international edition in the same language as the review’s flagship.

The launch of the new edition comes less than a year after Harvard Business School opened the India Research Center in Mumbai—joining centers in Buenos Aires, Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Silicon Valley, Calif.

Harvard’s heightened focus on India comes as the world’s second most populous country experiences rapid growth. Its real gross domestic product—a common measure of the size of a country’s economy—expanded at a 7.6 percent rate last year. And last quarter, India’s economy exceeded expectations, registering a blazing 8.9 percent growth rate.

“India is a country where there’s a great deal of management innovation going on, so it’s important for HBR to be on the ground and working with a publishing partner there,” said Olofson.

Thomas A. Stewart ’70, editor and managing director of HBR, described the new edition as an “important opportunity.”

“This is a key part of a strategy of expanding the global impact of HBR...You have both supply and demand in the management idea market in South Asia, and among emerging markets, that’s a unique combination to find,” he said.

HBR was founded in 1922 and—with its international editions—reaches nearly half a million readers worldwide, according to its publisher.

Twice in the last three years, HBR was a finalist for the National Magazine Award for General Excellence.

The India Today Group is the country’s largest magazine publisher, with licenses for such magazines as Time, Fortune, Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, Scientific American, and Reader’s Digest.