Ernst and Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014: Dr. Cyrus S. Poonawalla


February 16, 2015

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ey-eoy-2014-finalist-cyrusDr. Cyrus S. Poonawalla, Chairman and Managing Director, Serum Institute Of India, who pioneered the development of affordable life-saving vaccines and is counted  among the largest vaccine manufacturers worldwide was named the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014.

Dr. K. Radhakrishnan, Former Chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), a key architect of India’s self-reliance in space and technology, who also oversaw the breakthrough Mangalyaan mission to Mars last year, was honored with the EY Lifetime Achievement Award.

Dr. Cyrus S. Poonawalla will now represent India at the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year Award (WEOY) in Monte Carlo from 3-7 June, 2015.

Dr. Cyrus S. Poonawalla
Serum Institute Of India

Dr. Poonawalla is the Chairman & Managing Director of Serum Institute of India which was founded by him in 1966 with a noble purpose of manufacturing serums and vaccines at the time when life-saving serums and vaccines were in short supply in India and were being imported at high prices. It’s a testament of his vision, grit and innovative approach that Serum Institute is today the world’s largest manufacturer of all vaccines put together in number of doses manufactured and supplied to protect children globally.

A visionary with great foresight, Dr. Poonawalla manifested his dream of “Health for all with affordable vaccines” with the creation a company that is today rewriting the script for how Biotechnology companies in India do business. An astute businessman and a determined leader, he is credited for the remarkable success of Serum Institute of India, which has transformed from a Company started with a capital of Rs. 5 laKhs as a small-scale Industry into one of the largest vaccine manufacturers in the world, with over 1.1 billion doses of high quality serums and vaccines that are used in over 140 countries. Dr.Poonawalla’s Serum Institute, was one of the first offering low cost preventive and curative vaccines (priced at approximately 50% less than the multinational companies – notably several vaccines such as Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Polio vaccines etc. etc. which are available at the lowest price in the world.

Referred to as one of the seven vaccine heroes by Bill Gates, Dr. Poonawalla has been honoured with numerous accolades including “Padma Shree” in 2005, “The Sabin Humanitarian Award 2005”, “The Sabin Corporate Philanthropy Award” in June 2005 in USA , “U.S. Award for Excellence in the Inter-American Public Health” in 2010, the “EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Business Transformation Award” in 2012 and “Lifetime achievement” award at the Vaccine World Summit India in 2014.

Dr. Poonawalla has not only been a champion for low-cost, high-quality vaccines for the masses, but is also a strong advocate for human rights, upliftment of the ailing, poor and needy, in leprosy, a votary for public health reforms and free immunization for the under-privileged.

One of the other great passions of Dr. Poonawalla is horse racing and breeding. He is an icon in the thoroughbred horseracing and breeding world, besides being elected as Chairman of RWITC and the Turf Authorities of India. His most significant achievement was when, as a member of the Executive Council of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities in Paris (i.e. the world Governing council of the sport], he received the Life-time Achievement Award in Paris on 5th October, 2009.