In this series, we speak to IESE alumni from around the world to find out about the different paths they have followed and the impact of IESE on their lives.
Name: Madhur Srivastava
Year of Graduation: 2007
Country of Residence: United Kingdom
Current Employer: Founder and CEO, DocHQ Limited
Tell us a little bit about you and how you got to where you are?
I am the founder and CEO of DocHQ Limited, a health-tech business with a mission to provide global access to patient-centred healthcare and health information using secure and scalable technologies.
After spending nearly two decades working in the technology sector and building tech start-ups, I still enjoy solving complex problems with my creative and technological skills. I am a keen learner and have a passion to find solutions which can deliver change at scale that has kept me involved in some of the most innovative ventures and projects.
I have worked in Mahindra BT, British Telecom, L.E.K Consulting and Solera Inc and founded companies like Madbid.com, Ywait, and DocHQ.
I hold a B-Tech in Chemical Engineering from NIT, India, and MBA from IESE Business School.
In your opinion, what role has your MBA played in your career? Is there anything from your MBA experience that changed your view on leadership or running a business?
IESE MBA has been influencing my career even today, through the alumni, professors who still find time to support and advice, classmates, and interns. Recently Professor Mike Rosenberg took time to not only advise my current company on our strategy, he also helped us with our podcast series. IESE alumni have taken time to talk to me and extended support with introductions in industries and sectors where I have never worked before.
At IESE I caught the entrepreneurial bug, and I am glad that since leaving IESE, I have always worked in some of the most innovative projects. The entrepreneurial spirit and can-do attitude have always helped me as a leader and with my businesses.
What has your entrepreneurial journey been like? What inspired you to start DocHQ? Any highlights that you can share?
When I was living in India and later in the UK, I always felt that people did not have any control over their health and lacked real choice. With aging population and increased healthcare pressures, I felt that technology can help alleviate these problems. Also, I believe healthcare sector is primed for disruption.
When I started working on the business plan, I quickly realised that we need to focus on a niche area within healthcare and we soon found that Travel Health is one of the segments where use of technology can make a significant impact. I also got some help from IESE alumni in the Travel Insurance space who helped me develop the product.
DocHQ is my third venture, though my most satisfying project yet. I will say I enjoyed success when I launched MadBid in 2008, but I feel DocHQ is where I am developing products which add real value to people and society.
In terms of highlights, I will say we are very proud of the pivot we made to launch a Covid-19 management solution and then last week we launched the world’s first online medicine checker, a product which allows anyone traveling abroad to check if they are carrying medications legally.
The past few months must have been challenging, especially as an entrepreneur. How has Covid-19 impacted you personally & professionally? How did it impact your business?
Covid-19 has impacted the entire humanity and my family personally. We lost some good friends and personally at times things were stressful. With a 2-year-old at home explaining them why they cannot hug their best friend was tough. Running a start-up with my daughter at home expecting me to drop everything to play with her had its moments.
We had launched our Travel product one month before the shut down in the UK. It was one of the toughest times for us, we had to conserve cash and cut cost or find another means to utilise the assets we had. I think we were lucky to collaborate with my friend and ex-founder of MadBid to develop a pivot. We created Klarity, one of the only tools that is a Software as a Service product to manage the health risk of a company’s workforce, health monitoring, testing and recommendations to company HR departments.
Tell us more about Klarity. What are your plans and ambitions for it?
Klarity is a health risk management tool, which uses AI to identify risk score of the employees of companies and how much at risk they are if they contract Covid. We combine the risk score, regular symptom monitoring, employee work planning, with various Covid-19 tests and testing methods to help employers and businesses bring back their employees safely and in an ethical manner.
Klarity is a pan European solution, and we have teamed up with AON as their preferred supplier for the Covid-19 solution. We are currently designing solutions for some of their pan European clients. We are one of the only companies which is combining machine learning and randomised testing to reduce the cost of testing while stopping the local outbreaks as soon as possible.
We plan to partner with more companies like AON and use existing networks to offer our solution. In the long-term we will want to resume our Travel health product, but for now our focus is our fight against Covid-19.
Sounds like a valuable tool, it’s great to see that you’ve been able to pivot and create solutions for companies to deal with the pandemic. Finally, do you have any advice for aspiring MBAs or current IESE students?
When I finished my MBA, we started our career with a financial crisis around the corner so like many students now, I had gone through the downturn. My advice will be don’t give up, take on internships, part-time roles, help start-ups, do some volunteer work, or maybe start your own company, but keep going. Every person you meet, help or work with will become an opportunity and you will learn from this situation.
Thank you Madhur for sharing your story!
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