Based in Pune, Indus Health Plus was primarily started to propagate the inherent benefits of preventive diagnostics. Their aim is to create awareness on how preventive health check-ups can reduce mortality and risks related with modern day diseases. The mission is to create a health revolution, safeguard health care and promote ethics and honesty in healthcare.In conversation with Abhilasha Dafria for Yourstory.in, founder Amol Naikawadi tells us more about how his venture aspires to focus on preventive healthcare and sell the concept of prevention to a-symptomatic Indians. Read more to know to ‘WAKE UP’ to the concept of preventive healthcare!
Amol, please introduce yourself to our readers.
Hailing from a small town, I did my schooling in a military school in Satara. I pursued higher education in Commerce from Pune, MMCA and was keen to forge my own path ahead, confident that the opportunity would present itself in due course of time. Chartered Accountancy honed my skills and I immediately plunged into the world of business, never to look back.
And now coming to Indus Health Plus. Please tell us about the innovative work that Indus Health Plus is doing in the healthcare sector.
Pioneering in affordable, comprehensive and qualitative preventive health check-ups and diagnostics for a-symptomatic Indians, Indus Health Plus was established in the year 2000 by a team of like-minded professionals to provide affordable, comprehensive and qualitative preventive health check-ups and diagnostics for a-symptomatic Indians. These professionals took help from a group of renowned doctors and medical practitioners to design such services which would emphasize on how prevention can definitely save lives.
Our research indicated that India was increasingly becoming the capital for various diseases like heart-attacks, cancer, and various other stress related diseases. Most of the unexpected expenses are medical expenses, which leave many a person bankrupt. We understand this need and hence we believe and advocate the concept of prevention, which is the mantra of the day.
An ISO-9001-2008 certified company; it has alliances with well-equipped and renowned delivery partners across the country.Induscurrently operates in 18 cities across 42 centers of our delivery partners.
If you were you to explain me your business model in a nutshell?
Our product is essentially a basket of high-end comprehensive preventive health checkups. The few people who do undertake checkups typically pay Rs.1000 for an inadequate check up. The end results are misleading reports. It is much like giving your expensive car for service and getting it back with only your air pressure checked. It is incomplete. Therefore the key focus of our product is the check up of people above 20 years of age who are more prone to such diseases. Various tests are conducted to indicate possible blockages in the heart and alert one about a potential heart attack. Additionally other parameters are also checked.
According to Time magazine, cardiac CT scan is the most comprehensive scan available for the heart. This scan involves a huge sum of money but Indusoffers this service along with a bouquet of other services at a very nominal rate. Indus believes in adding value to their services for their consumers, as they know that in Indiaalmost 80% healthcare expenses are paid out of pocket. A recent ICRA report emphasizes on the role of prevention especially to battle chronic diseases rampant in India, and so there is immense scope for work here.
Our products are- Preventive healthcare packages and Health friend card.
What is your USP?
The USP is that all the medical tests under any package (that are undertaken at any of the delivery partners), are conducted in a SINGLE day followed by reports and counselling- All in ONE Day.
So what inspired your business idea of a health care venture?
‘Prevention is better than cure’, is something that we have all heard since our school days but seldom do we actually implement this principle. We forget to put it to practice and take chances with something that’s most precious- Our Health. The same person, who would spend money and time to get his vehicle quarterly serviced, will think it is a waste to go for his annual BP checkup! When a couple of our close family members were diagnosed with chronic ailments, we realized that we were too late in detecting the diseases. This coupled with self-realization emphasized that, though prevention is a need, not much was being done in that area. Keeping this in mind, Indus Health Plus was established in the year 2000.
What is your market size? Also what is your clientele like? If you could share with us some demographics.
As preventive health care is a fairly new industry, it is difficult to ascertain our market share, but we do hold high brand awareness in the markets we exist in. For example in Pune, we would definitely be the leaders in this segment going by our sheer customer base. In Maharashtra andGoa, our market share is around 30%. A lot many diagnostic chains, stand-alone hospitals, regional and national healthcare chains are approaching us to offer their services and make Indus panIndia. With medical tourism being the most sought after inIndia,Indusis not far behind. Indus clientele includes many NRIs who purchase the packages for their parents or family inIndia. Foreigners are also a part of our ‘ever-growing’ family and they understand the benefits of our products and avail them whenever they are inIndia.Majority of our clientele is from an age group of 35 and above. We have been focusing a lot on interiors of the states we are active in. Though now, we are also gaining momentum in urban areas and metros.
How does your revenue-model work?
The revenue model followed by Indus Health Plus is that the clients purchase packages from us and pay us for the packages. We have negotiated a fixed rate which has been agreed upon by our service providers. We believe in maximizing the use of the unutilized machine time and though we work on small margins, we have been profitable since the year of inception. We also incur promotional and overhead costs, but since we do not need to invest in medical infrastructure, we canmaximize our profits. Our revenues for 2010-11 have been Rs. 75 crores.
How is IHP funded? Do you plan to raise more funds?
The initial capital (Rs. 50 lakhs) was contributed by family and friends, who were equally passionate about the cause, to start Indus Health Plus andIndia’s first company that dealt exclusively in
Preventive Healthcare Services. We are growing at the rate of 35% on an annual basis. The company expects to invest around Rs. 100 crores over a period of next 4 years.
What challenges do you face in this space?
In this domain, the biggest challenge is to spread awareness of what Indus Health Plus as a brand stands for and how our services can help the society. When we started in 2000, the awareness on preventive healthcare was very less. Specifically in the last 5 years, there has been a substantial growth in the levels of awareness amongst people. Indus Health Plus has been striving towards inculcating preventive health services as a lifestyle in the society, and as one could understand, trying to introduce & market a new lifestyle, that is maybe one of the single most challenging objectives to attain.
How do you plan to cope with this?
We have reached out close to 1 million families through our below-the-line activities and have woken them up to the concept of preventive healthcare. In healthcare, word of mouth plays a very important role. Through our marketing efforts, we have been able to reach a good portion of the markets where we exist, but this is an ongoing process as we aim to reach everyone to make this lifestyle change. Our regular seminars in housing societies or corporate institutes and various other above-the-line activities expose the society to this type of solution through a 360 degree approach which involves advertising, online, as well as non media events to reach out to them directly. We plan to invest heavily in these media and also concentrate on electronic medium to reach out to the masses in the next few months.
What are your expansion plans? The next big step?
Currently available across 42 delivery partners in 18 cities, our concentration is in Maharashtra and Goa, with a recent entry into Delhi, we aim to reach 50 centers by March 2012 and 100 centers till March 2014.Indusaims to achieve pan-India presence by concentrating on multiple location availability of their services for their clientele. Many regional and national healthcare chains are in talks with us. If these associations do materialize, we will achieve the numbers much before the targeted date.
Also, we have new platforms opening up to us. We have recently launched our e-commerce website from which clients can buy health packages online. Also, our corporate healthcare team is also advancing, offering great health-packages to corporates which are good for the employees, and at the same time easy on company’s budget.
With this, we will also like to touch medical tourism which is still in nascent stage in India.