Sahaya where Fernando spent much of his time, may not have been a Rs 300-crore company, but can be considered a game-changer. Sahaya was the first print company in Mumbai to install a PUR perfect binder. “Sahaya did not have the scale to produce books in large numbers, but it specialised the art of book printing," said P Sajith of Impel-Welbound. He added, “Fernando was a print specialist who worked up the ladder of traditional print companies. His operation was small but the production capabilities had reached the international level.”
Sahaya was also the first company to install the Screen Truepress 344 to become one of the early adopters of digital print among offset printers. The Screen kit was later replaced with a Xerox iGen4.
Fernando was also a Heidelberg loyalist when it came to presses. “He was convinced that the best way forward for his business to grow was to go with Heidelberg, a swell move which paid off for both sides, and opened the doors for us for more machines in Shah and Nahar, which was stuck in the web of used machinery and dealers in those days,” said Peter Rego, business head- equipment sales at Heidelberg.
For someone who preferred to work in the confines of his print shop, Fernando did his bit for the fellow printers too. “He was a gem of a person. A bit of short-tempered man, he was soft at heart. I remember he was the first to get a PUR perfect binder in Mumbai, but he never said no to other printers who needed the services,” said Dhiren Thakkar of Nirman Impresse, who referred to Fernando as a very dear friend.
“The real impact was in the print studio, as he would call it,” said Jayant Pardiwala of Nippon Color, whose company has been one of Sahaya’s consumable suppliers. “Fernando knew exactly what he needs, and got it.” Pardiwala who was in discussion with Fernando to finalise two new investments, added, “He would always say – ‘if one has to invest, he must. There’s never a right or wrong time. Given today’s scenario, one cannot come to any conclusion. Being a service provider, customers will require our service at any given time and opportunities will open up. We are hopeful and confident’.”
Fernando is survived by his wife, and two sons Roshan and Anthony, their wives, and grandchildren.
|Farewell my friend, Fernando
Elizabeth Fernando, the name was quite confusing till I had my first meeting at Sahaya and did not know what to expect. And there he was, a man with silver hair and beard, more like a musketeer who took everyone and everything in his stride – the man who walked around the corridors of Shah and Nahar from nine in the morn till the wee hours of dawn, either ensuring that the books would reach his customer on time, or that his workers were well taken care of.
I met Fernando for the first time in the early 2000’s in his fortress – Shah and Nahar – never quiet, always on the go. We got to talking business and soon became close friends. He was convinced that the best way forward for his business to grow was to go with Heidelberg, a swell move which paid off for both sides, and opened the doors for us for more machines in Shah and Nahar, which was stuck in the web of used machinery and dealers in those days.
A gentleman to the core, he was never a bore. Mind you, he could also take one to task depending on the mood and situation. A tiger on the prowl in business, he also had another side where he was always willing to help those in need without making a fuss or noise over it.
He was a man with a great vision and a guru in colour management without the use of an eyeglass or a meter, his eyes were naturally calibrated to dissect colour and print within seconds.
I got to know what multitasking was all about, from him, where, in a single day he was as a good friend, a great and doting father, a devoted husband and in recent years a very adorable grandfather too.
Got the sad news this morning of his demise and my deepest condolences go out to his family. May he finally rest in peace after running a good race of life on Earth. Farewell my friend, till we meet again.
Peter Rego, Heidelberg India
|Fernando Sir was amazing
Fernando Sir was amazing, right from issuing a quotation to placing an order for a part of a machine; job on every machine to quality standard or deciding on the scheduling of the job to delivery, he was involved with all the aspects of the business – all this with a smile and kind words. And then he has effectively delegated to the next generation as well – a true legend. Rest in Peace Sir.
V Natarajan, Aura Print Solutions