India might get sick before it gets rich: Krishna Kumar
Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Among the earliest multinational corporations that started business in 1930, Philips India, a subsidiary of Royal Philipsof the Netherlands, ruled the consumer electronics market in India for many years. But it could not hold on to its position and lost out to competition from South Korean, Japanese and Indian companies. Philips has now changed its focus and positioning. While it has stuck to its core lighting technology, healthcare now gets more importance and consumer lifestyle is a fast growing segment. In his first interview after taking over as Philips India’s vice-chairman and managing director, Krishna Kumar speaks to Sounak Mitra on how the company is readying itself for the next few decades and the increasing importance of India to Philips’ global operations. Edited excerpts:
After heading the healthcare division, you took over as vice-chairman and managing director of Philips India last December. Healthcare has become a major focus for Philips in India. Is it your mandate to turn healthcare into the company’s largest revenue contributor?
My mandate is to build the future for Philips in India. Globally, Philips started 124 years ago with light, and light essentially took the company in two key directions. Healthcare as a division was started from imaging, which can’t be done without light. In the 1980s, globally, Philips decided to have a purpose around the innovations it did. Before that we were very broad and very deep. So defining the core purpose was the key. And we decided to deliver meaningful innovations with a vision to improve the lives of 3 billion people in the world by 2025.
- Health Care