A 15-year joyride: Ameera Shah

Publication: Deccan Chronicle
Posted on: October 16, 2016

A 15-year joyride: Ameera Shah


PublishedOct 16, 2016, 12:35 am IST

Ameera Shah

Entrepreneur Ameera Shah turning her father’s sole pathology lab in Mumbai, into a global empire today.
“So, how does it feel to be featured in the Forbes Asia’s Power businesswomen list?” we ask Ameera Shah, the 36-year-old entrepreneur, who 15 years ago, set on a venture that combined her knowledge in management with her father’s medical skills.“Great, of course!” replies the young visionary, who used to work with Goldman Sachs in New York, and has given speeches at several prestigious stages, including the Harvard Business School. Chennai was one of the first places where her chain of diagnostic pathology labs expanded to, while keeping in mind her father’s vision to expand across India.

“I have always been interested in taking the road less travelled. It has never been my personality to fit into something that is already structured. When I came back from the US, I found that my dad had built a very good quality lab in South Mumbai’s Kemp’s Corner and his vision was to have a pan-India chain. He was very early in his vision. He had a lot of ideas but didn’t know how to execute it,” she tells us.

Ameera’s father, Sushil Shah, a reputed pathologist, did not want to succumb to MNC pressure, and the daughter then aimed at building her own Indian force. “The past 15 years, we have spread from one lab to 130 labs globally and from 40 employees to 3,000 employees — and the journey has been a real joyride,” says Ameera.

At the time when she started off, there was no brand, no standardisation, no commonality in pricing. She recalls how the accessibility to healthcare was in a worse condition than it is today. “We transformed the industry in many ways. We changed a fragmented and unorganised industry to create a chain,” the 37-year-old entrepreneur proudly recalls.

Today, Metropolis Healthcare Ltd. is present across Sri Lanka, Africa and the Middle East with a market valuation of Rs 600 crores. “Clearly, the choice was to move into countries that still have no proper access to healthcare. In India, cost of healthcare is low when compared to the US. Usage is very little. But access is very low. In rural areas, people have to travel around 50 km or more to access a PHC. The government should move from being a provider of healthcare to a payer of healthcare,” she says.