Pankaj R. Patel

“Pankaj Patel has been named the “Best Pharma Man of the year” by the Foundation of Indian Industry and Economists in recognition of the growth of Cadila under his leadership”

Born in 1951, Pankaj Ramanbhai Patel holds Bachelor of Pharmacy and Master of Pharmacy degrees from Gujarat University, as well as a BA in Science and Law from the University of Mumbai and is an Indian billionaire businessman as the Chairman and Managing Director of Cadila Healthcare, the fifth largest pharmaceutical company in India

Wearing Several HatS

Pankaj Patel, Chairman and Managing Director, Zydus Cadila has over 35 years of experience in the Indian Pharmaceutical industry.

In 2017, Pankaj became the President of FICCI, and is also the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, IISER, Kolkata and Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bhubaneswar, in addition to being a Member of the Board of Governors and also the Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

He also holds responsibility of Chairman of IIM Udaipur, Member Governing Board of The Ahmedabad University, Chairman of School of Life Sciences, Ahmedabad University, Member of the Board of Management of the Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies and Executive Chairman, Vice President and Trustee of the Gujarat Cancer Society and Chairman of the Gujarat Cancer and Research Institute.

Pankaj has been named the “Best Pharma Man of the year 2003” by the Foundation of Indian Industry and Economists in recognition of the growth of Cadila under his leadership.

A long time back he had predicted that Zydus Cadila would become the third-largest pharmaceutical company in India; however, his company saw ups and downs and its fortunes were reversed and Pankaj even fell out of the list of richest Indians in 2005.

Known for facing challenges head on, Pankaj not only bounced back, but expanded his business further. From a turnover of Rs. 250 crore in 1995, the group posted revenues of over Rs. 6300 crore in FY2013.

With 20 discovery research programmes under various stages of clinical development, the Group invests over 7% of its turnover in research. At the group’s state-of-the-art research arm, the Zydus Research Centre, over 400 research scientists are engaged in NCE research alone.

Future PerFect

Pankaj is targeting Lipaglyn sales of 100 crore in the next 3-5 years, wants to launch 2 New Chemical Entities (NCE) products by 2020, and would invest 6-7% of revenues on research and development.

Planning to invest Rs. 500 crore every year, Zydus under his dynamic leadership is aiming to be a research- based pharmaceutical company by 2020. He is guiding Zydus to offer a dedicated Lipaglyn support programme to patients and        caregivers.      The      programme shall provide important support and information regarding access, adherence, education, thereby helping patients to start and appropriately manage their disease and therapy over time.

He has already developed Zydus Cadila under his insightful leadership as an innovative, global pharmaceutical company that discovers, develops, manufactures and markets a broad range of healthcare therapies.

Under his leadership, Zydus Cadila has evolved into a fully integrated, global healthcare provider, with strengths all along the pharmaceutical value chain. With a core competence  in  the  field of healthcare, Zydus Cadila provides total healthcare solutions ranging from formulations, active pharmaceutical ingredients and animal healthcare products to wellness products.

Mochtar Riady

“Through hard work & an unwavering spirit of an entrepreneur, Riady grew the company into one of Asia’s leading diversified conglomerates and also transformed Indonesia’s banking landscape”

A renowned philanthropist and business tycoon who is widely regarded as a pioneer in Asia’s banking and real estate sectors, Mochtar Riady has built a cradle- to-grave business empire that permeates every corner of life in Indonesia. Riady is certainly a giant among self-made men – counting over 100 companies and more than a few billion dollars in value – yet his countenance is down to earth

A LIFE TIME OF SUCCESS

Through hard work, determination and an unwavering spirit of an entrepreneur, Mochtar Riady grew  his  company into one of Asia’s leading diversified conglomerates. Riady also transformed Indonesia’s banking landscape and became widely acknowledged as a master in turning around the fortunes of financial institutions, making his mark in creating the country’s top banks – Bank Buana, Bank Panin, Bank Central Asia and then Lippo Bank.

As one of Asia’s largest and most diversified conglomerates, Lippo Group’s investments in real estate, retail, hospitality and leisure, healthcare, education, media and news, telecommunications, digital technologies and financial services have been driven by his responsibility to the community. Lippo Group is now the largest listed property company in Indonesia by total assets and revenue, with a unique and integrated business model.

Riady operates Indonesia’s premier private hospital group, the only one achieving world class standards, and is an undisputed retail property industry leader, and his vision is to impact lives, particularly through environment friendly, high quality and sustainable business activities. The Group builds the foundation through the implementation of  Corporate  Governance  (CG)   in  all aspects of the business as well as at every level of the organization. By implementing the Corporate Governance Principles expectedly, it enables more transparency and the most recent development information regarding the performance  and  the  prospects  of the Group. Riady always prioritizes environmental sustainability on property development.

TOWERING ACHIEVEMENTS

Riady likes to integrate eco-friendly concepts, and align green space with the best amenities. His CSR activities focus on three main pillars, namely education, public health, and environmental awareness, with special focus on critical situations that arise in the country, such as natural disasters that impact many lives. These pillars are interrelated with the objective to improve the quality of life and prosperity of the nation in general.

Understanding that people are increasingly looking for potential areas for property investment, the Lippo Group’s commitment continues to develop five pillars of development, namely Innovative Infrastructure & Transportation, High Tech CBD & Research Hub, Business & Commercial Hub, Green Sustainable Living and Center of Art, Culture & Education.

Riady recalls that he started from what he calls sandang, pangan, papan, jalan, which respectively means clothing, food, housing, roads, but today his business empire permeates every corner of life in Indonesia.

With a mix of listed and private entities both at home and abroad, Mr Riady’s empire is difficult to value, but the value he has created in the lives of Indonesians is unparalleled.

He is committed towards actively participating in sustainable economic development to improve the quality of life and environment for the collective benefit of the company, local community, and society at large. Riady’s main focus now is the next big shift: moving more business online, as is evident from the launch of MatahariMall.com ecommerce platform.

Dhammika Perera

“His ability to spot opportunities promptly even in an adverse economic scenario has brought him to the fore in the comity of business tycoons & helped him set up Vallible One PLC”

Over the last couple of decades, Mr. Kulappu Arachchige Don Dhammika Perera, one of the richest businessmen in Sri Lanka, has proved himself a great inspiration for the Sri Lankan corporates. With a high risk appetite passably complemented by dexterity, business acumen and strategic excellence, he has been converting unprofitable enterprises into profit-making ventures

EDUCATION & EARLY BUSINESS VENTURES

Born as the grandson of the then richest man in Payagala, owner of a large number of paddy fields, Mr. Perera rose to build an economic empire in his country, hoping to transform an economy of mediocre size into a gigantic one in a span of a few decades.

Beginning his career from a miniature platform as provider of slot machines on rent, he was quick to move on to manufacture slot machines after having undergone technical training in the manufacturing technology in Taiwan.

Earlier, Mr. Perera had joined Texla Central College, Horana for studies from where he moved on to the University of Moratuwa to continue his studies but it was not to be, as he dropped out of the institute of technology where he was pursuing his Diploma in Technology to pursue his business dreams.

THE 20-YEAR PLAN

Beginning   with   investing   in  share market, Mr. Perera came up with an enterprising 20-year plan in 1999. Through his arduous efforts, knowledge and unparalleled confidence, he swiftly rose to the rank of the greatest investor in Sri Lanka’s banking sector, share market and other financial institutions. Being a man of clear vision and quick judgement, Mr. Perera has made some unwavering business decisions.

His ability to spot opportunities promptly even in an adverse economic scenario has brought him to the fore  in the comity of business tycoons and helped him set up Vallible One PLC enterprise. By dint of his unusual skill in entrepreneurship and foresight as the founding Chairman and Managing Director of the company, he has diversified portfolio of the company’s business and has magnified them to include varied sectors such as consumer, finance, leisure and ceramics.

His depth in understanding and judgement of financial and administrative riddles has earned him the coveted chairmanship and membership of the board of directors of many banks, financial companies and other manufacturing and trading corporations. His generosity lies in sharing his knowledge and expertise with other professionals with regard to solving some of the perplexed business problems. His thirst for more and more knowledge and experience evidently appears to be unquenchable, which has helped him attain stunning success in the field.

SERVING THE NATION

Apart from developing his own business empire, Mr. Perera has  taken  pride in serving the nation through some important positions he has held  in  the government. He has  served  as  the Chairman of Sri Lanka’s Board of Investments for 3 years, as Sri Lanka’s Secretary of transport and also as a Member of the Strategic Enterprise Management  Agency.  Mr.   Perera has been Deputy Director General of Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka since September 2012.

A man of rare commitment, brilliance and kind heart, Mr. Perera’s greatness lies in the very fact that he is not a mere trader but a great innovator and investor. He is a wealth creator who believes in buying more and more ailing and loss- making companies and transforms them into profit-making ones within a short span.

Boenjamin Setiawan

“Boenjamin Setiawan started his pharmaceutical business in his garage back in 1966 and has turned it into a major force in the regional pharmaceutical industry”

Holding a doctorate in pharmacology, Boenjamin Setiawan founded Kalbe Farma in a garage in 1966, and made it the largest pharmaceutical company in Indonesia. Boenjamin Setiawan is nicknamed as Dr. Boen, and he also controls Mitra Keluarga, which operates 12 hospitals

From GaraGe to Globe

Boenjamin started his pharmaceutical business in his garage back in 1966 and has turned it not only into a major force in the regional pharmaceutical industry but has also branched out into consumer goods, where it competes head-on-head with industry giants, and in hospitals, under the Mitra Keluarga brand.

Boenjamin’s main interest is stem-cell research and he has set up the Indonesia International Institute of Life Science (i3L) in collaboration with Swedish institutions and offering programs in healthcare, marine science and forestry. The institute’s mission is to be a leading and globally connected interdisciplinary institution that impacts society through science and innovation.

CreatinG a Giant

There are almost no Indonesians that don’t use products from PT Kalbe Farma, the Indonesian pharmacy giant that produces a lot of popular medicines and nutrition products. The person behind this company is Boenjamin Setiawan, a pharmacy graduate from Universitas Indonesia and University of California who developed PT Kalbe Farma from a small pharmacy store in a small garage in Jakarta to a multinational pharmacy company.

After graduating from the University of California with a pharmacy degree, Boenjamin Setiawan started with a stable, decent job as a pharmacy lecturer. However, his business instincts urged him to open his own pharmacy business. Together with six partners, he started a pharmacy business startup in a small garage in Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta, and Kalbe Farma was launched on September 10, 1966 as a small pharmacy business.

transForminG & expandinG

The company enjoyed small profits and grew gradually, until the monetary crisis in year 1998 sent many companies in Indonesia to bankruptcy. Even after applying for loan from foreign banks, Boenjamin was unable to keep the company running as well  as  before, so he decided to sell many of the company assets except those that were related to pharmacy, and started new business branches while also keeping Kalbe Farma as a pharmacy company. During the difficult times, Boenjamin kept his company from crumbling by expanding the company’s business to other fields like property and logistic, but still strengthening the main business in pharmacy.

Finally, he managed to keep PT Kalbe Farma from bankruptcy, and later even managed to increase its business expansions and profits. In 2012, Kalbe Farma even managed to acquire a health beverage company, Hale International. In the same year, the company also went into joint venture with Milko Beverage and built Kalbe Milko Indonesia. This company later made popular health beverages in Indonesia such as Sakatonik, Extra Joss and Fatigon.

The key of Kalbe Farma’s success is strong business base, which focuses  on pharmacy despite various business branches expanded by the company. Currently, about 17.4% of its profits come from medicine products, and 20% come from nutritional or health products such as baby and toddler milk, pregnant mother supplement and extra calcium milk.

Boenjamin, who is now 80 years old, has now retired and decided to move his business to younger generation. Currently, his niece Bernadette Ruth Setiady holds the position as Director.

Aditya Khemka

“He is dedicated to providing path-breaking security and surveillance solutions to ensure safety of vulnerable industrial and defence establishments and socio- cultural life in general”

Aditya Khemka is reckoned among the pioneers of the security & surveillance industry – one of the firsts to introduce surveillance in India. With his unwavering zeal and foresight he has created iconic brands like CP Plus and established himself as an advocate of security & surveillance. Apart from being a successful entrepreneur, Mr. Khemka is passionate philanthropist, actively working towards the upliftment of the underprivileged

Need for SurveillaNce

The rising threat from terrorism, violence, road rage and crimes has made the need for reliable and effective security solutions indispensible. As India endeavors to be among the highly developed and prosperous nations of the world, it needs to be well-prepared to face the unique security challenges of the future to ensure safety of vulnerable industrial and defence establishments and socio-cultural life in general.

aN HoNeST viSioN

Aditya Khemka has been dedicated to the mission of providing path-breaking solutions in the field of security and surveillance. He envisions a secure world free of such threats; a world where physical security is a given – a right that each individual is entitled to. An MBA from the Fore School of Management, Mr.      Khemka                     brings with him more than two decades of experience          in                     channel                     relationship management.                   As                    the                   Managing Director of Aditya Infotech Limited (AIL), a flagship company of the Aditya Group, which he set up in 1993, Mr. Khemka contributed  tremendously to its growth, size and capabilities by initiating nation-wide distribution of computer parts and peripherals in 2000, expanding it further into niche technology verticals such as audio-video graphics, multimedia, animations, post- production and broadcasting solutions.

He finally incorporated CP Plus, a security and surveillance brand in 2007, which went on to become the youngest and fastest brand to be counted among the Global Top 4 and Asia’s Top 2 security and surveillance brands, in a very short span of time.

Mr. Khemka has grandly accomplished the herculean job of installing 5 facets in AIL – Aditya Distribution, Aditya Technology Summit, Aditya Solutions, Aditya Rentals, Aditya Care – in order to provide value-added services to Indian customers in the field of security surveillance, capturing the leadership in security and surveillance products distribution and  to  guide the decision makers in the field of security. He has not only created iconic brands in security & surveillance but also significantly contributed to the mammoth task of revolutionizing and commercializing surveillance in India through    extensive    communication, marketing and training.

With more than 52 branches across 650+ towns and more than 550 sales and technical professionals working under its helm, he has led AIL to becoming India’s No. 1 CCTV production and distribution house.

A   VerSaTile   PerSoNaliTy

Aditya Khemka is an avid reader and a regular contributor in leading IT and security magazines. He also speaks on security and surveillance for key international forums.

An  enthusiastic   philanthropist, Mr. Khemka is involved in host of CSR activities that are aimed at the improvement of healthcare, education and public security in the country, with a core focus on the welfare and development of underprivileged women and children.

Lee Shin Cheng

“My Happiest Day Was When I Bought Dunlop Estate, Because In The Late 1960S, I Had Applied For A Job At Dunlop Estate But They Did Not Employ Me Because I Was Not Adequately Qualified”

Heading IOI Corporation Berhad, better known as IOI Group, as its Executive Chairman, Lee Shin Cheng is a Malaysian business magnate, investor, & philanthropist, who has developed IOI into a conglomerate managing oil palm plantations, producing specialty fats & oleochemicals, and developing property in Malaysia, Indonesia, the US, & Europe

Undeterred  by   Challenges

Lee grew up northeast of Kuala Lumpur on a rubber plantation, where his father ran a small Chinese food shop, and to help support his family, he left school at the age of 11, and started selling ice cream on a bicycle which he did for four years before returning to finish high school. Though he faced several rejections in his life, he kept on moving forward with his dreams. He sought work with one oil palm plantation company for a supervisory job, but was turned down, but Lee, who was then only 22, was undeterred by Dunlop Estate’s rejection. He went on to get a field supervisor’s job at another palm oil company.

Today, he has established a refinery in Rotterdam, Netherlands which is the largest palm oil refinery in Europe. IOI’s oil palm plantations in Malaysia and Indonesia produce palm oil and palm kernel oil. These oils are made into specialty oils, metallic stearates and fats that are used in soaps, detergents, cosmetics and food additives.

Under Lee, IOI Group is a leading real estate developer in Malaysia, and its projects include townships, shopping malls, condominiums, office towers, and resorts.

hands-on Managerial style

Twenty years later of his rejection, Lee bought Dunlop Estate, which he recalls as his happiest day in 1989. His desire to buy it stemmed from his rejection in late 1960s, which he still remembered. They had rejected him only because he was not adequately qualified. The theory is that if they had employed him, he would probably not have bought Dunlop Estate. However, this purchase marked a significant milestone in his life.

Lee adopted a hands-on managerial style and focused on maximizing palm oil yields. Lee’s walkabouts on IOI’s 152,000 hectares of oil palm plantations in Malaysia and Indonesia earned him the “tree talker” moniker among journalists, rival plantation companies, and bankers in Malaysia.

He explains that each tree has its own characteristics. If one produces well, he tells it that he loves it, and if a tree is not productive he would tell it that he would give it six to nine months to bear the quota of fruits. Surprisingly, the trees appear to listen to him and tend to bloom to expectation. If trees fail to produce, he tells them that he is sorry, and he chops them down.

Lee accepts that he is rightly called a tree talker, as he has commented in public several times that his success can be attributed to his habit of talking to the trees. He believes that if he continues to talk to the trees, he would continue to be successful in his business.

awards & aCColades

Lee has been bestowed with FIABCI Malaysia Property Man of the Year 2001 Award. In 2002, he was conferred an honorary doctorate degree in agriculture by Universiti Putra Malaysia in recognition of his contributions to the palm oil industry. He also serves as a Board Member of Universiti Putra Malaysia, an adviser to the KL & Selangor Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, a council member of the Malaysian Palm Oil Association (MPOA), a member of the Malaysia-China Business Council, the honorary president of the Association of Eng Choon Societies of Malaysia, and the Federation of Hokkien Association of Malaysia.

Omar Abdulla Al Futtaim

“Omar Al Futtaim has made the Group a trusted name among the reputed global brands, providing them holistic B2C & B2B services in automotive, retail, finance & real estate sectors”

With an estimated net wealth of $4.1 billion, Omar Al Futtaim is successfully leading the Al-Futtaim Group in offering holistic B2C and B2B services and solutions in automotive, retail, finance and real estate sectors, taking it to fresh heights achieving great corporate success and international recognition

winning customers’ trust

Successfully         leading            the       Al-Futtaim Group since his appointment as its Vice Chairman, Omar Al Futtaim has established the group as a trusted name among the reputed global brands from the USA, UK, Japan, Sweden, France, Germany       and      Switzerland                  providing them holistic B2C and B2B services and solutions in automotive, retail, finance and real estate sectors.

Omar Al Futtaim has steered it to extend its footprints in 14 countries, representing 29 brands across the automotive industry, as Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Dodge, Volvo, Jeep and Chrysler are some reputed brand names associated with it, and the Group is today a trusted name in offering consumer financing solutions for various brands.

A versatile leader, under Omar Al Futtaim, the Group has become a leading name in property development and operations within MENA and delivers the best shopping experience on a massive scale across MENA & APAC.

Continuously expanding its business portfolio under the leadership of Omar Al Futtaim, it deals in automotive, electronics, retail, watches, jewellery, travel, construction, engineering, marketing communications, logistics, insurance and real estate, and the Al- Futtaim Group represents many reputed brands across the world that include Panasonic, Toshiba, Sanyo, Aftron, Alcatel, IKEA, Ace, Marks & Spencer, Toys R Us, Seiko, Raymond Weil, Westar, Kolber and Minato Pearls.

With his immensely rich experience, he has made the Group a major force as a reliable trader of financial instruments and solutions it offers to its customers in its pursuit to protect and boost their wealth.

He is further endeavouring to develop an ever-evolving and growing portfolio of insurance, wealth and asset management solutions that include highly rated commercial and consumer financing products to meet the needs and requirements of its customers.

Thus, under his able guidance, in the real estate sector, the Group with its decades long experience and its motive to create superior lifestyle for every member of the community  provides  its customers value-added real estate solutions giving them value for their money; in the retail sector, the Group has an exceptional retail division with exclusive expertise to launch and develop brands of highest operating benchmarks, enjoying simultaneously its tremendous mutually beneficial relationships with its partners.

ingenious & visionary

Omar Al Futtaim is known to employ innovative, advanced business practices and solutions, effortlessly combining those into the Group’s corporate structure and thus offering memorable, value-added experiences to his customers in real estate, automobile, financial and retails sectors. Adopting a customer-centric approach and maintaining great integrity with a collaborative spirit, he has created a one-stop shop providing best transport solutions to motorists, fleet owners and contractors alike.

In the automotive sector, under Omar Al Futtaim’s guidance, the Group offers end-to-end product solutions for commercial vehicles, passenger cars, new and used cars, for sale, leasing and renting, construction equipment and auto logistics.

Vivek Patni

“The young & dynamic Vivek Patni, is one of the most powerful businessmen of India, as he manifests great zeal in leading his team of experts, & is always eager to get the results”

MAN OF VIGOUR & PANACHE

Having inherited the glorious business legacy from his blood relations, Vivek Patni has invariably demonstrated extraordinary passion and dedication to accomplish great ambitious plans to take his organization to fresh heights. With his far-seeing ability and an analytical bent of mind, he has enabled his organization to achieve remarkable success in a short span of time

ENERGETIC & INDUSTRIOUS

Blessed with sharp entrepreneurial skills and an astute observational power, Vivek Patni has been playing a vital part in all the key policy making decisions of Wonder Cement. Exhibiting keen interest in the corporate affairs of the company, he successfully leads the branding, communications and marketing divisions of his company, in his quest to earn a place in the premium segment of the market. His hands-on approach has earned him various prestigious awards including the ‘Shaan-e-Rajasthan’ award for his remarkable contribution to the growth of his organization.

CONTRIBUTION TO SPORTS

Being a passionate sports enthusiast with special inclination towards cricket, he has been a driving force behind the sports-building initiatives taken by the company. He was the brain behind Wonder Cement’s smart initiative of inaugurating the Wonder Cement Saath7 Cricket Mahotsav in Bikaner to promote sports in Rajasthan. As he had planned, this cricket carnival witnessed 4,000 teams from across the state in the race for the title, as cricket lovers from 10,000 villages and cities across the state took part in this competition making the tournament a big success. To give direction to his love for cricket, he has also set up a fully equipped cricket
academy with state-of-the-art facilities— Wonder Cricket Academy in Udaipur, where he has employed some of the best coaches from across the nation to polish the skills of upcoming players. To give a concrete shape to his dreams, under his insightful vision, the Academy is going to directly induct the top four players from the Saath7 tournament—three boys and one girl.

MAINTAINING THE STRATEGIC EDGE

Possessing razor-sharp business acumen, Vivek always develops great marketing strategies to tap his consumers using social media tools to the full effect. Understanding well that the consumers nowadays have access to multiple locations to communicate, his firm is targeting social media platforms to engage with its customers for effective marketing. His vision can be gauged by the fact that Wonder Cement has already managed to engage with over
18 million users in social media and around 4 lakh users on Twitter much ahead of its contemporaries JK Lakshmi Cement, Ambuja Cement and ACC. On Facebook, he carried out a campaign #PeopleOfWonder, which had the total engagement of over 1 lakh and total reach of over 9 lakh people. Another digital campaign #wonderofcement he carried out on Facebook had over
8 lakhs of total video views. With his astute leadership, Mr. Patni has been the driving force behind his company extending its footprints out of Rajasthan to neighbouring states also, such as Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana, making Wonder Cement one of the fastest growing cement brands in these states.

LEADING THE PACK

The young and dynamic Vivek Patni, who is still in his twenties, has been counted among some of the most powerful businessmen of India, as he manifests great zeal in leading his team of experts, and is always eager to get the results by employing both traditional and state-of-the-art ways. He always takes a keen interest in all the corporate affairs of his company and likes to have a say in all key policy making decisions. A keen observer, he is always ahead of his times in using technology to his advantage, always identifying the thrust areas for his company before others. He has also been widely applauded for his success in setting up a frontline ultramodern manufacturing unit in a record time of 18 months, increasing the manufacturing capacity of his company multiple times.

Vikas Panjabi

“Having already established a niche market in the dessert category, Vikas used his entrepreneurship skills & created an effective marketing strategy to spread brand awareness”

RIDING THE SUCCESS WAVE ON CHOCOLATE DESSERTS

Starting his professional journey with a single outlet at Ahmedabad in 2007, the suave Co-founder and MD of The Chocolate Room India, Vikas Panjabi, has established over 260 chocolate cafes extending its footprints in 8 countries, over 20 states and over 60 cities and is aiming to grow twofold in the next 2 years

TAPPING THE RIGHT NERVE

Establishing the first chocolate café brand to have introduced franchise in the Indian market and live kitchen concept in the Indian café industry, Vikas has set the trend for serving a plethora of fresh sumptuous chocolate desserts and beverages to his customers. As he well understands that quality and international standards are important to survive in any F&B business, before serving to the customers, all his products are test-marketed to gauge their appeal to the public and only after passing through stringent quality test procedures are included in the menu.
Having registered The Chocolate Room (TCR)’s presence with about 260 outlets in cities including Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Bhopal, Chennai, Gurgaon, Lucknow, New Delhi and more, Vikas is aiming to expand its footprint to 500 outlets and increase its turnover to Rs. 300 crore by fiscal year 2020.

SETTING A NEW CHOCOLATE CULTURE

Vikas has set a new trend in the chocolate industry, and his enthusiasm and efforts have been well rewarded as he and his company has won numerous prestigious awards. Dedicated to offer his customers complete satisfaction and high-quality delicious chocolates, he has in his kitty 20 flavours of Italian hot chocolate, chocolate fondues, chocolate melting pots, chocolate cakes, waffles with strawberries and hot chocolate sauce, and a special dessert hand-made chocolates using the finest Belgian Chocolate, launched in October 2007 in India.
Having already established a niche market in the dessert category, Vikas used his astute entrepreneurship skills and created a strategic and highly effective marketing strategy to spread brand awareness, appealing food products to gain global recognition, cross-promotional offers with MNCs, collaborative branding with other companies, growing faith and support of customers and above all excessive oral publicity that has led to the spread of an unheard of chocolate culture in India.

QUEST FOR QUALITY

Having established an ISO 9001:2008 certified company, Vikas has always keenly focused on high quality and standards being followed by all his franchisees, and thus maintains the following excellent qualities in all of them— reliable background, financial credibility, favourable retail background, young entrepreneurs, motivation to not only run the outlet but also come up with more numbers, customer service skills to get the customers educated about the brand, and a good market area of over 1,000 sq. ft. with excellent footfall possibility. He is ever ready with his team of experts to provide all kinds of assistance to a prospective franchisee such as equipment, staff selection, staff training and on-going support to maintain impeccable value of its chocolate products and satisfactory customer service.

SPREADING WINGS

Riding on the wave of success, Vikas has some great ambitious plans for his organisation, as after extending its outlets in tier-II and tier-III cities, he is targeting bigger cities for expansion. TCR is now moving towards raising equity and looking to spread more company outlets in 2018 by raising equity. Realising a high percentage of sale in his company through selling chocolates to corporate houses and to customers who visit his outlets, he is planning to get into retailing chocolates through its current and modern trade outlets to take it to the next level. Extending its presence to countries like Australia, the USA, the UK, Canada, Oman, Dubai, and Cyprus, he is consistently growing his brand as a pioneer among the chocolate serving cafés.

Vicknesh R. Pillay

“His intention behind TNB Ventures was to build kickass start-ups & to be the companion of choice to both start-ups & corporates eyeing to innovate & build upon their entrepreneurial capacity”

GIVING WINGS TO ASPIRING START-UPS

Having proved himself as an entrepreneur realizing revenues of S$47 Million in 4 years of his previous venture and founding, managing and exiting funds worth over €300 million, Vicknesh is keenly engaged in Singapore’s start-up ecosystem and playing a significant role in the cultivation of aspiring entrepreneurs and start-ups in Singapore

REALIZATION OF A DREAM

A graduate with a double degree from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and a postgraduate in Business Administration from UCLA Anderson and the National University of Singapore, Vicknesh R Pillay has been appointed a judge and a mentor for several entrepreneurship workshops, conferences and start-up competitions.
Coming up with a vision to establish a next-generation venture capital platform, TNB Ventures, Vicknesh along with his bunch of entrepreneur friends has already realized revenues of S$47 Million in 4 years of his previous venture as an established entrepreneur.
His intention behind establishing TNB Ventures was to build kickass start-ups and to be the companion of choice to both start-ups and corporates eyeing to innovate and build upon their entrepreneurial capacity.

ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR

Already established as an entrepreneur who founded, managed and exited an independent advisory firm, Vicknesh was conferred the ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ award at the coveted Ernst and Young Entrepreneur Awards 2013.
At present, Vicknesh works as a Board of Director at several companies advising and aiding them on their internal strategies and regional expansion plans.
According to Vicknesh, Singapore start-ups have transformed into next- generation solutions in the space of Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things.
Well understanding that these days local start-ups are focusing to mark their presence in the international arena from an initial stage of their expansion, while many global start-ups are coming up in Singapore using it as a base to fulfil their ambitions, and the government and private sector players are making joint efforts to set up the building blocks to promote a vibrant tech start up ecosystem in Singapore, Vicknesh, as the Managing Partner of TNB Ventures, likes to make full utilization of his experience of fund management, investment and go-to-market experience to lead TNB’s flagship venture capital fund.

HELPING START-UPS IN THEIR INITIAL STEPS

TNB Ventures in a joint initiative with Aura Group, an Australia-based fund manager, has realized the first close of their joint TNB Aura Fund 1 managed by Vicknesh along with the Head of Asia for Aura Group. The limited partners of the fund include institutional investors and UNHW individuals who provide strategic value to TNB’s portfolio companies. The fund prefers B2B companies that can offer balancing value to each other even if it is across industry verticals.
The company’s investment thesis is focused on IoT/IIoT, Robotics, Big Data, Al, AR/VR and the fund offers go-to- market assistance and options making use of TNB’s widespread corporate partner network within the comprehensive idea of Smart City, which is very interactive to the frontier technologies objective of TNB’s fund. The fund would provide its founder access to mentors having great business intellect and positive entrepreneurial experience.
A research by BCG reveals that the IoT market is expected to register significant increase in revenue across all levels of the technology deal and by the year 2020 the B2B spending on IOT Technologies, apps and solutions are expected to register a growth up to $267 billion.
TNB ventures under the effective leadership of Vicknesh has also entered into partnership with SPRING SEEDS Capital, the investment arm of SPRING Singapore, to jointly invest in and develop early-stage IoT, advanced manufacturing and engineering start-ups in Singapore with a maximum joint investment amount of up to S$4 million per venture.