Working with the sole ambition to keep nurturing a win-win situation between organisational aspirations and team goals, Manish Shah is setting up a unique culture of workplace motivation. His transformational leadership style has set his venture Prakash Chemicals International into a new orbit of growth, initiating a culture of entrepreneurship, innovation and calculated risk-taking at all levels.
A key aspect of a transformational leader is that he defines and crafts a vision and strategy for the company and ensures that every employee lives the same vision. Manish Shah and his team nurtured the vision of being the top global distributors in the world way back in 2007. Today the firm is counted among the top 15 distributors of Middle East & Africa only because he ensured that every employee lived the same vision.
DRAWING UP POSITIVE INSPIRATION
Any leader becomes a great leader by seeking inspiration from already established personalities who can motivate them either spiritually or in polishing their entrepreneurial strengths. For Manish Shah, his inspiration has been his father who believed strongly in values, ethical practices and carving our long-lasting relationships. He dedicates his success in the entrepreneurial world to these very qualities that enabled him to create an organisation which has grown leaps and bounds from its date of inception. It was only his father’s teachings that helped him set the organisational mission of being a signature entity in terms of its people, customer and supplier practices and become one of the top global chemical distribution companies.
SETTING UP A POWERHOUSE
It was in the early 90s that India was beginning its journey to being a selfdependent nation, liberalising its economy that Manish Shah took the helms of Prakash Chemicals International in his own hands and contributed immensely to its pioneering steps in chemical exports from the country. It was with great perseverance, persistence, and patience that he crafted a success trajectory for the business even when none of the Indian players was keen on collaborating for the international markets. It is these qualities that enabled him to get an earlybird advantage for the international market for Indian products.
He started the company in an era when there was not only any support for exports from the government and the Indian manufacturing community but also lacked basic infrastructures like the internet, email communications, and direct international telephone services. Airmails were the only prominent mode of communication with international customers. The journey had its share of trials and tribulations but through his vision, ambition continued perseverance and strong conviction he achieved this scale of operations today which benefits being ranked among the top global chemical distribution companies of the world.
For him, the highest point in his journey thus far has been him leading a company which made its beginning as a small merchant exporter to a global conglomerate of high repute and stature with presence in 118 countries and a customer roster of more than 5000 global clients comprising prominent MNCs.
In the past two decades, PCIPL has expanded its marketing offices in Cameroon, Brazil, Ivory Coast, Vietnam and Egypt and has over 6 global stock points. Through its four wholly-owned subsidiary companies outside India (USA, Netherlands, Kenya and UAE), full-fledged Research and Application Development Centre, and State of Art Global Warehousing, Blending and Repackaging facility in Dahej SEZ, it provides chemical solutions to customers in 118 countries. It’s ACE, MAX and PRO business verticals cover the entire gamut: distribution of bulk chemicals, custom manufacturing of speciality chemicals, and manufacturing of performance chemicals respectively, across 10+ application industries.
The true prowess of a leader lies in his/her ability to innovate continuously and create opportunities for the whole team to grow and perform together. Manish Shah also has invested a great amount of his time and energy in innovating some path breaking projects at his firm.
In his leadership role at PCIPL, Manish Shah has planned and executed the setting up of a full-fledged R&D unit to design and develop processes for molecules where India currently has no manufacturing strength thus creating an alternative to Chinese imports. These processes are then transferred to SME to promote Make In India for these molecules.
He has also been functional in setting up of an ISO 9001, 14001 compliant Quality Control and Application Development Centre to assist customers in their production and formulation design so as to improve customer experience – a one of a kind initiative for any Indian chemical distribution company.
Currently, he is working on developing a unique digital interface with features for e-commerce such as purchase, order tracking and inquiry tracking for all customers across 118 countries. He has also developed a Process-Oriented Culture with clearly defined KPIs so that the company can grow at a rapid pace in all dimensions of business while ensuring strategic fit. These processes are created, implemented and monitored regularly via our centralized ERP system so the entire organization is on the same page.
TAKING CARE BEYOND BUSINESS
Manish Shah believes in the power of positive progression of the business. It means that he wants to create a mutually beneficial environment for not himself and his teams, but also the society at large. He is associated with various trusts and organizations that provide maximum impact to people’s lives. Under his able leadership, PCIPL indulges in a number of philanthropic activities as well. The firm has adopted 15 anganwadis (preschool for underprivileged children) in the surrounding Gorwa village along with their entire families of close to 1500 people – Project Kiran. PCIPL provides the women in families with employment opportunities through vocational training and specialized projects such as weaving, sanitary napkin making, box making among others. PCIPL also runs de-addiction camps for the males in the families and provides scholarships and tuitions to the children. PCIPL also funds Disha Autism Center in Vadodara & is building a hospice for old age people in Vadnagar.