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Science, discovery, Big Pharma & small startup

Milind Chaudhari (right) and Prasad Bhagat, founders of We lnnovate Bio Solutions, with their product, a wound healing cream for diabetic patients, in Pune.

Science, discovery, Big Pharma & small startup

We Innovate Bio Solutions is in the startup laboratory, so to speak. The pharma firm has the product and is now engineering the ability for financial success. Here, its founders share their unique story.

Being an entrepreneur is far more exciting than being a scientist,” says Milind Chaudhari, founder, We Innovate Bio Solutions. "As a scientist, you have to move forward logically from Step A to Step B to Step C. But as an entrepreneur though you have to look at several issues all at the same time. You can jump from Step A to Step D. I love it," he says excitedly.

Milind and his co-founder Prasad Bhagat were scientists doing their PhD at the Agarkar University. If the aim of business is to solve a problem, then their transformation into entrepreneurs began perfectly.

Says Milind, “Our work involved discovery of new molecules. The problem of critical wounds became our focus. There were many things about critical wounds that set us thinking. Basically, it was a problem that was not resolved appropriately.

"The figures astounded us. Globally there are 78 million people who suffer critical wounds. Every single day 180 people with such wounds have to undergo amputation and five die because of it. This, despite the fact that the US government alone spends $25 billion on treatment every year. So we thought, what can we do about this problem?"

Beyond the Idea

Finding a solution led these two young scientists on the path to entrepreneurship and to the setting up of We Innovate Bio Solutions.

They first studied the aspects of the problem. Says Milind, “There are three types of critical wounds: one is the diabetic foot ulcer, the other is a pressure ulcer (like in bed sores) and the third was venous ulcers, those that are caused by problems in the veins in the legs.

"The options were expensive and with no guarantee of success. In fact, people with such wounds needed to see a specialist like a surgeon who would have to debride or surgically remove dead tissue. There was no solution that could be followed easily. If you ask around you will find that there are people with 20-year-old ulcers. The other aspect was that this happens mostly to the elderly and so it is not something like cancer that has a high mortality rate. It was largely a neglected problem."