Metropolis hopes to win in rural India

We transformed market: CEO

Metropolis hopes to win in rural India

Ameera Shah, whose journey to transform Metropolis from a single pathology laboratory in Mumbai to a multinational chain of 125 diagnostic centres and 800 collection centres started at the young age of 21, sees rural India as the company’s next big challenge.

In an interaction with Deccan Herald, the MD and CEO of Metropolis Healthcare cited accessibility and affordability as the key hurdles in the hinterland. When this alumna from the University of Texas entered the space in 2001, she found a highly fragmented and unregulated market. Also, the number of tests offered in the pathology labs in the country were very limited.

“Our idea was to introduce and create access to these various tests for the Indian demography, which was exposed to only about 500 tests at the time. And it was important to do this at reasonable prices,” said Shah. Metropolis today boasts of 150 doctors, about 5,000 tests on offer, and a result accuracy of 99.9%.

Practices in India, where about 90 per cent of the market is still fragmented, were highly inadequate in terms of expertise and protocols when she began, said Shah. Metropolis, in many ways, is an attempt to consolidate this industry by introducing global protocols and merging it with Indian hospitality, which she said, was elementary in its journey.

Professional, corporate players like Metropolis have today made a difference to the fragmented nature of the market with its traditional, doctor-led practices. Metropolis, along with other leading players SRL Diagnostics and Dr Lal PathLabs, currently has about 12 per cent of the Indian market.

“The healthcare industry has normally been a traditional one and for the first time we are introducing a new approach which happens to be interesting for the consumer as well for the reason that we bring in professionalism and specialisation,” said Shah.

Metropolis has centres in Sri Lanka, UAE, South Africa, Mauritius, Kenya, and Ghana. Just like the rural thrust in India, the Africa foray means a lot for Metropolis.

The company already operates 10 centres in the virgin soil of Africa. “I’m very keen on building the same chain of facilities in Africa, like in India,” she added.


CULTURAL SHIFT

 Pathology labs in India once offered only about 500 tests
 Metropolis boasts of 5,000 tests, and a result accuracy of 99.9%.
 Metropolis, SRL Diagnostics, and Dr Lal PathLabs have 12% share in the
Indian market
 Metropolis has 125
diagnostic centres and 800 collection centres across seven countries



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