Q Tell us
about the growth of DSS Imagetech since its inception?
- Dr Ushakar Nag,
manager, DSS Imagetech, New Delhi
DSS Imagetech has grown significantly. From the microscopy solutions to
life sciences business which was started in 2004, we went on to become
the leaders in the microarray genomics system. From there we also moved
to molecular diagnostics business in partnership with major companies
such as Abbott Molecular and Dako.
Today, we consider ourselves as the single largest platform in India
offering services in cancer diagnostics. DSS has now taken up the
challenge to foray into the field of medical science with new medical
division in partnership with Olympus Corporation.
Also, recently we received best sales and best distributor awards for
2010 from Dako. We are also proud recipients of the best customer
services in Asia Pacific from Abbott. Therefore, we have come a long
way since 2004.
Q What are the challenges faced by a distributor like
The main challenges include lack of quality manpower and grooming of
leaders. I think that currently there is no national level association
to represent us. Besides that, in the last five years, the increased
corruption level at research institutes is bothering us. Even after the
L1 shortlist, the tender process is not justified. It is a vicious
cycle which keeps going on. This is seriously affecting the industry
The institutes now demand five-year warranty and services for the
instruments and that too after the negotiations.
Q How do you see the market with the recent takeovers of
Indian biosuppliers by MNCs?
We cannot stop MNCs from coming into the country but we need to make
ourselves valuable so that MNCs see the value and start joint ventures
with us. With the entry of MNCs, we can rationalize the products in the
Q What is the revenue expectation for this financial
After having crossed the revenue figure of $19 million (
88 crore) in FY 2009-10, we are expecting
a huge growth to $28 million (
125 crore) this time.
Q What are the future plans of your company?
We are going to reshape the field of molecular diagnostics. We are set
to enter into manufacturing of very high-end molecular biology
reagents. This will reshape our entire business as there are only few
companies in this manufacturing segment. DSS has been selected as a JV
by a major Japanese MNC, Takara Bio, to manufacture molecular biology
reagents in India. The new company known as DSS Takara Bio, will come
into effect from April 1, 2011.
The JV is a milestone achievement for DSS and will take the company to
a new dimension. It will also bring into India, the manufacturing
technology of high-end molecular biology reagents thereby giving a
competitive-edge to Indian biological research. Gathering strength in
manufacturing - biomolecules/diagnostic applications, we want to be
recognized all over the country.
Q What is lacking when it comes to finding talent in the
The quality of biotechnology taught in colleges is very poor. The
lecturers who are teaching have never worked on a PCR machine.
Therefore, the students are devoid of any practical knowledge. At the
end of the day, the students who are paying hefty fees to study
biotechnology are not getting their due and remain underpaid as
compared to their counterparts in other industries. Therefore, it is
important to make education more practical.
Q What is required for promoting growth of biosupplier
and biotech industries?
The growth of biosupplier industry can be achieved by focusing on
indigenous manufacturing of research consumables and instruments.
Moreover, the biosuppliers should not be overburdened with the growth
of biotech industry in India, which is still in an early phase. It will
not grow overnight but I am highly optimistic about its future growth.
We are fortunate to have the leadership that is doing its best to
increase the interaction between research institutes and the private
in New Delhi