Pradeep Guha, the managing director of Culture Company, a media consultancy based in Bombay, is one of the leading figures in the Indian media, so it is surprising to learn that he has never been a journalist.
However, he has run The Times of India and was chief executive of Zee TV before leaving to set up his own consultancy and to "make some money for myself for a change".
When he agreed to consult for Nexus India Capital Advisors, Suvir Sujan, a director of the company, said: "Pradeep's deep operating experience in media is of tremendous value to many of our portfolio companies in traditional media like television and print and new media like the internet and mobile."
Hardly surprising then he has strong views on the media in India. A 30-year veteran of the industry, he dates the major changes to 1991, when the economy was liberalised. Now 20 years later, it is unrecognisable from what it was.
The market for newspapers in the country may still be growing, but they are the cheapest in the world and according to Mr Guha, "the more you sell, the more money you lose". Advertising spending is therefore critical.
He believes that Indian newspapers are on a race to attract the lowest common denominator, filling their pages with a heady mix of Bollywood and cricket. Will they ever go upmarket? "I think so at some point, but it will take some time."
Now in his 50s, married with a son, we met in London to discuss Indian growth, social media and corruption.
Why does the India growth story attract so much curiosity and debate?
One of the reasons would have to be the absurdly short span of time within which a fledgling economy has become the fourth most powerful country in terms of GDP. When India gained independence from British rule in 1947 it was still steeped in socialistic associations, along with a history of deprivation. We were modest, cautious, inward looking, defensive and hard-working. The watershed came with the sweeping economic liberalisation reforms of 1991, which opened the doors of India to the world and let in a tidal wave of goods, services and entertainment.
How big is Indian media now?
While it's growing fast, combined it is only the same size as NBCUniversal, with a turnover of US$15.5 billion [Dh56.93bn]. Print makes up $6.5bn of this, but while it's growing overall, it is losing market share to television, with 42 per cent of the advertising total, down from 60 per cent 10 years ago.
And television and the digital world?
Already worth $6.5bn, India has started embracing the digital revolution with a near 30 per cent increase in digital adoption. TV is gaining market share and with digitisation will come transparency and therefore better distribution revenues. TV's future looks bright in the foreseeable future. What has really just caught fire is the internet world, propelled by the spread of cheap high-speed internet and the proliferation of broadband services, especially in the mobile market. You can now buy a smartphone in India for US$60 [Dh220]. My driver has two mobile phones, one basic and one smartphone.
India has a young population. How does this affect how they like to consume media?
Parent power remains strong in India. At prime time, control of the remote passes to the mothers - they are known as "mummy's remotes" - but at other times, the market is more geared to the young consumers. Given this accelerated speed of development, the lines between mediums have also blurred and young people don't care how they consume their content anymore, so long as it comes to them. Given India's familial structure, there is a great chance that India might leapfrog once again and from largely general interest television content may receive their niche content on their smartphones.
How are media companies reacting?
Every media owner is in a mad hurry to increase the size of the market and enjoy the first mover advantage. They are dumbing down, using Bollywood and cricket to attract people, which are two cash cows of content that never fail to delight."
How prevalent is corruption in the country?
It's everywhere. It starts with the gatekeeper and moves up to every level. Individual journalists tend to be trusted more than their owners or publications - people are always trying to figure out what's on their agenda.
What about social media?
Very important. Rather than following the news, we are now finding that it's setting the agenda. In the past we always felt that whatever happened in the US or UK would happen in India one day. Now it's the other way round because of our demographics. Young are not interested in middle-aged opinions. They are interested in anything that becomes a fad.