A garage, a beaker and a Bunsen burner
Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, one of India’s most influential businesswomen and among the world’s most powerful women, says she’s an accidental entrepreneur.
Mazumdar-Shaw has shown that modest garage start-ups can extend beyond software and hardware companies. She set up what is now India’s largest listed biotechnology company in 1978 and she encourages others to follow suit.
“Today a lot of early stage research work can be done in a garage,” she said at the Reuters India Investment Summit.
Mazumdar-Shaw reckons opportunities for bio-tech startups are huge, considering the demand for sophisticated technology like genomic based systems, diagnostics for cancer stem cells, and high-end synthetic biology. All these are usually developed in small labs across the country.
“What I find today is that there are a large number of very innovative young biotech entrepreneurs who are doing things in a very small way. CellWorks is doing very interesting work on drug design.”
Her advice to budding entrepreneurs – If you have a novel idea and are looking to set up a business, don’t think twice, just go for it.
“I think in the life of any entrepreneur, you start somewhere. You start small. I don’t think most entrepreneurs have the luxury of thinking big because you have very limited resources. “
“If you’re an entrepreneur with a concept, with some kind of idea which you can at least start something with, go for it. It might be something small, but you know it’s just building it up. I mean that’s what I did.”