The Award Winners
|Dr MK Bhan||Dr NK Ganguly||Sudhir Pai J||Q-Vac & Shantetra|
BioSpectrum Awards 2005
A s in the past two years, the third BioSpectrum Awards were
selected by a distinguished panel comprising members with di
verse backgrounds. As is the practice, Dr Cyrus S Poonawalla, chairman, Serum Institute of India, Pune, who was the Biotech Person of the Year in 2004 presided over the meeting, which was held at the office of Serum Institute of India in Pune on October 22, 2005.
The panel consisted of members representing various stakeholders of the industry like biopharma, bioagri, bioservices, venture capitalists, academics and infrastructure provider segments. The panel members were: Prof. AS Kolaskar, Vice Chancellor, University of Pune, Pune; Dr KK Narayanan, Managing Director, Metahelix, Bangalore; Deepanwita Chattopadhyay, Chief Executive Officer, ICICI Knowledge Park, Hyderabad; Sarath Naru, Managing Director, APIDC-Venture Capital Ltd, Hyderabad; Shyam Malhotra, Editor-in-Chief, BioSpectrum, and other CyberMedia Publications, Gurgaon; and E Abraham Mathew, Chief Editor, BioSpectrum, Bangalore. Dr Aravinda Babu, head, operations, WellQuest, Mumbai could not attend the meeting but sent his selection to the jury members.
The panel was constituted in September and all the members were circulated the list of nominations and the backgrounder of the nominees through e-mail for their perusal, before the panel meeting in Pune. The Panel's mandate was to discuss four regular categories of awards-Biotech Person of the Year, Life Time Achievement, Entrepreneur of the Year, and the Product of the Year-and explore the opportunity for Special Category Award. BioSpectrum Editor N Suresh, Senior Assistant Editor Ch. Srinivas Rao and Assistant Editor Narayan Kulkarni provided the research support to the Jury.
|Dr Cyrus S Poonawalla, Chairman,
Serum Institute of India
|Sarath Naru, MD,
APIDC-Venture Capital Ltd
|Dr KK Narayanan, MD, Metahelix||E Abraham Mathew,
Chief Editor, BioSpectrum
|Deepanwita Chattopadhyay, CEO, ICICI Knowledge Park||Prof. AS Kolaskar, VC, University of Pune||Shyam Malhotra,
|Dr Aravinda Babu, head, operations, WellQuest|
The jury was unanimous in selecting Dr M K Bhan, secretary, Department of Biotechnology as the Biotech Person of the Year. "He is an extremely positive person. He addressed various sectors of biotechnology in the national biotechnology strategy report that shows his understanding of the subject," observed Deepanwita Chattopadhyay. "Besides being a great scientist, he has proved that he is also an able administrator. His initiatives are showing results. There is an increased thrust to promote biotech entrepreneurs," added Dr KK Narayanan. "Contributions are far more visible. He is very accessible to the industry," said Dr Cyrus S Poonawalla. Prof. AS Kolaskar complemented, "Interaction with the industry has improved a lot after he became secretary of Department of Biotechnology and he has been able to get a lot of attention for the industry."
Sudhir Pai J, CEO and Managing Director, Lotus Labs was chosen as the Entrepreneur of the year award for his ability to bring results. "He has built a good base as a biotech entrepreneur," said Sarath Naru. And "The valuation for Lotus Labs has proved his skills and ability as an entrepreneur," said Deepanwita Chattopadhyay. "All the nominees meet most of the criteria like charisma, ability to raise funds, ability to attract talents, have good business plan, etc. We have to give weightage to results achieved too. In delivering results, Sudhir Pai has an upper hand over the others," noted last year's Entrepreneur of the Year, Dr KK Narayanan. "Although it was acquired, the higher valuation for Lotus Labs has brought the attention of the investor community towards the Indian clinical research organizations, a growing sector in biotechnology," noted Abraham Mathew.
Dr NK Ganguly, director, ICMR, was unanimously selected for the Life Time Achievement Award for his pathbreaking work in the past three-four decades, contribution to the evolution of biotech sector, and his visionary role. "Like Dr Bhan, he too is extremely open and has taken a lot of interest in building ICMR," noted Dr Cyrus S Poonawalla. "After he took charge of ICMR, Dr Ganguly brought energy to the institution. ICMR has many firsts to its credit under his leadership," said Prof. AS Kolaskar.
The fourth Award to be discussed was the Product of Year. Dr Poonawalla requested Prof. Kolaskar to chair the jury for this award category and stepped out of the discussion chamber as his company's products too figured in the list of nominations. The quadravalent vaccines of Serum Institute of India and Shantha Biotechnics were jointly chosen as the Product of the Year. "Considering the quality and novelty of the product, its reach at an affordable price, the jury has jointly selected Q-Vac of Serum Institute of India and Shantetra of Shantha Biotechnics Ltd, both combination (quadravalent) vaccines for DPT and Hepatitis B for the Bioproduct of Year award," observed Prof. Kolaskar.
During the deliberations, the jury decided against having any other special category awards this year.