A nation rich in biotechnology can lead the world. The field of biotechnology has always been the forefront in the welfare of the nation and its economy. This sector has played the role of the messiah in an epidemic like COVID 19. Technology has guts to shape the future of mankind and biotechnology is being a medium for it!
In the same context, we had a pleasure to talk with Mr. Praveen Gupta, MD & CEO at the Premas Life Sciences (PLS). PLS is empowering the health field across the world with its undisputedly most advanced cutting-edge technological offerings.
Have a read to an interview with Mr. Praveen Gupta, and get known to the Premas Life Sciences’ quality offerings.
- Tell us about the company.
Premas Life Sciences (PLS) is a young, dynamic, and focused organization introducing game-changing niche Genomics, Cell Biology, and Biopharma technologies to boost innovative research and diagnostics in India. We are also the knowledge partners to several reputed research institutes and hospitals, enabling them to set up core genomics facilities with complete support at all fronts.
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- What were the initial challenges you faced?
The foundation of Premas was laid down when ‘start-up culture’ was not a buzz word. Two major obstacles that we faced were attracting talent as well as customers because for both the groups we were a new, unknown, and untested brand. Our vision for the future, our passion coupled with the technical prowess helped us establish faith in our customers ultimately conquering these hurdles down the line.
- Which was that point that triggered the growth of the company?
I think believing my gut instinct to introduce Next Generation Sequencing in India at a very nascent stage was the “it” point. Partnering with Illumina was a revolutionary moment for us. It helped us catalyze the growth of genomics in our country exponentially.
- How have the company graphs changed since the foundation? Can you share a few statistics?
We have fortunately been growing at a CAGR of 40%. We achieved an increase in revenue per existing customer and have been an integral part of building the genomics space in India from scratch to approx 450 Cr industry employing 3-4,000 people. Established 10+ service providers ensuring Indian samples remained in India.
- What is the reason behind your company’s long-standing success?
The most essential ingredient is our values and belief system which we have managed to keep intact throughout our growing years. Our mantra has always been a customer-centric approach and it has paid off well when we witness customers advocating us as to others in the market. Another very important key to success is that we always had the eye for identifying new breakthrough technologies early in the game and creating a need instead of simply serving the need.
- What are the products the company focuses on? How are they different from those in the market?
Our portfolio boasts of diverse cutting-edge tools serving multiple research and diagnostic applications in the field of Genomics, Cell Biology, and Biopharma.
Our products are unique and stand apart in the market on account of their uncompromised quality, high-level automation and throughput, globally reviewed and published in leading research journals.
- How do you decide to take the company a step further in terms of your products?
First of all, we believe that we have so much to embark upon to accelerate the potential of our existing product lines. Secondly, deeper penetration of existing markets with newer applications alongside creating new markets and territories by expanding our horizons and thirdly, constantly looking out for more exciting technologies to partner with.
- Is there any new addition to the list of products? Anything exciting you would like to share?
Yes, we have recently partnered with a very innovative company, Codex (earlier known as SGI-DNA). Their platform BioXP 3200 is the World’s first and only fully automated gene synthesis platform based on their patented Gibson’s assembly technology. It can undoubtedly revolutionize the vaccine/Biopharma development efforts undertaken by our top pharma companies and bolster the “Made in India” vision.
- What do you think are the responsibilities of an entrepreneur?
So, I personally believe that an entrepreneur is no different than a leader and it is the sole responsibility of an entrepreneur to create more entrepreneurs by demonstrating a path and instilling inspiration apace with adding value to his/her stakeholders including employees, customers, shareholders and the society as a whole.
- Can you please brief us about your professional experience?
I have been building my knowledge and experience in the industry for 27 years now. I cherish my humble beginnings right from being a frontline sales guy with Ranbaxy laboratories in the In Vitro Diagnostic (IVD) market to switching in the Life Sciences market and holding leadership positions at Thermo Fisher Scientific, Bio-Rad Laboratories, DSS-Imagetech and finally being part of the founding team of Premas Life Sciences.
I personally believe that an entrepreneur is no different than a leader and it is the sole responsibility of an entrepreneur to create more entrepreneurs by demonstrating a path and instilling inspiration apace.
- What are the key achievements of your entrepreneurial journey?
In my adventurous journey so far, what gives me the thrill is being the part of this journey in which we have seen the emergence of Genomics as an industry in India and thereby interacting with some of the best minds in the Indian Life science and Diagnostics industry. We were the very early adopters in the segment and each drop of effort has been the foundation of this vast ocean we see today.
- How do you look after your employees? What makes your team unique?
We like to call ourselves as ‘a new age start-up’ and proudly boast of our inclusive culture, where every member of the team is open to sharing ideas, suggestions, and even challenge the routine. The perfect blend of technical expertise and creative thinking as well as a combination of experienced professionals and passionate youngsters makes our team truly unique.
- Is there any special experience with your clients you would like to highlight?
While every meeting, every event, and every customer talk is of utmost value as it has only added to my learning but I will never forget my first interactions with IGIB during the starting phase. Our customers have always been our focal centre and we can proudly say that we have transitioned from vendors to partners because of the trust that we have established and made a brand name that they can reckon with, hence making our customers our biggest marketers.
- According to you why one should be innovative to stay ahead in the market race?
We’re literally living on the wheels. To be innovative is to be unique in our own way – that’s what makes one relevant. To lead the race, one has to develop a change in perspective and be able to “think outside the box” that differentiates them from the crowd. It puts them on a pedestal.
- Whose business story do you find the most inspiring?
Other than Narayan Murthy, I am truly inspired and touched by people in my vicinity who reflect an infectious zeal and passion, understand their purpose and move forward unabashedly to follow their dreams.
- Constant vigilance- a need or a strategy? Please share your views.
I feel that being on your toes is the need of the hour yet a core strategy to keep you ahead because constant vigilance helps you to keep up with the extremely dynamic and the high paced markets, not just keep up but also be able to make strategic, time-efficient and valuable decisions to beat the volatility of the markets that you have to survive in.
- It’s a rat-race out there. How do you cope with that?
A whole lot resides in your perception and attitude, either you can let it get to you and fall for the rat race or enjoy what you do to such an extent that leads you to raise the bar. For me, I love being challenged, muddling through problems, and finding creative solutions to stay competitive and relevant. Pressing one’s nerves every once in a while, helps us be effective and efficient in the longer run.