Internship with Bertelsmann India: an amazing experience!

Hi from Montréal! As I have just returned from India to start my exchange semester in Canada, I would like to share some impressions of my summer internship at the Bertelsmann India Corporate Center in Delhi, India. 

Some quick words on my background: I first got into touch with Bertelsmann during an internship in 2014. After graduating with a B.Sc. in Economics & Business Administration from Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany, I had joined arvato’s Corporate & Business Development team to support on global strategy projects. Though I left Germany behind to enroll in the Management Master program at Católica-Lisbon in Portugal, I stayed connected with Guetersloh as a member of the Bertelsmann Student Challenge program. Eventually, it was the Student Challenge coordinators who introduced me to the Bertelsmann Corporate Center in India. 

India is a highly promising and tremendously exciting growth market for a company at the intersection of media, services and education. While Bertelsmann is present in India on the divisional level with arvato, RTL and Penguin Random House, the Corporate Center was established to further strengthen the positioning in India and act as an enabler along the group strategy. On the one hand, this is achieved through Bertelsmann India Investments (BII), Bertelsmann’s corporate VC and PE fund focused on investments in digital, media and education. Besides, the India Corporate Center has successively moved into corporate development activities: It supports local divisions in business development projects and enables the internationalization of Bertelsmann units to India, but also helps to leverage synergies across divisions, e.g. through workshops and events on key business themes.
During my stay, I worked on corporate and business development projects. Right from my first day on I was involved in an exciting project to evaluate the market entry of one of the Bertelsmann businesses. My day-to-day tasks ranged from research and strategic analysis to the preparation of meetings and calls with industry experts. Eventually, our team developed a market study including potential entry options, which was later presented to the respective top management. Further projects included, among others, the development of a market study on the digital advertising landscape in India, the preparation of a workshop event for local divisions as well as research and analysis for Indian and international businesses within the Bertelsmann portfolio. While working with my colleagues, I appreciated the great level of trust and responsibility that I was given as an intern from day one on. Particularly, I found the culture of support and feedback to be amazing and exceptionally motivating. 

My responsibilities helped me develop a more sophisticated view on Bertelsmann’s businesses and on India’s Media & Entertainment landscape, which I found to be very particular in the way it is shaped by demographic trends, regional cultures and the ongoing digitization. Moreover, I learned a great deal about India’s Internet ecosystem which has kicked off to build momentum. As a matter of fact, Indian startups are grabbing global attention and are currently raising incredible amounts of funding from prestigious investors almost daily. 

Besides work, living and traveling in India is an absolutely amazing experience. Together with Bertelsmann interns from Germany and India I shared a company apartment in Nizamuddin East, a quiet colony in South Delhi. While working during week, we took the weekends to explore India. From narrow alleys and wonderful bazaars to astounding temples, Delhi, the City of Djinns, has many stories to tell. Tickets for domestic travel are relatively affordable and invite to travel through the country. Featuring the famed Taj Mahal, the city of Agra is just a 3-hour ride from Delhi. Two highlights of my weekend trips were Mumbai, India’s financial center and film powerhouse, and Varanasi, the spiritual capital of Hinduism and probably one of the oldest continually inhabited cities worldwide. 

I had an awesome time in India! My internship was challenging and great fun at the same time and I encourage every student to seize such an opportunity. For those who are still indecisive: Feel free to contact me and I will gladly discuss my experiences with you. 

Best regards,