Driven to excel

International alumnus Anubhav Jain takes healthcare to a new global level with his technology expertise and business acumen.

Anubhav JainAnubhav Jain considers himself a global citizen. The UTS graduate (Bachelor of Science in Information Technology and Computer Science) spent his formative years in Africa and India before pursuing university studies and a career in Australia.

Work has taken him to his parents' home country of India, as well as the US, Europe and Japan. He's currently based in Singapore as the co-founder of GoDoctor, an online platform that connects medical professionals across the world and allows them to collaborate, build knowledge and seek new opportunities. With offices in India, GoDoctor is being piloted with institutions including Johns Hopkins Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Stanford Medicine, Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic in the US.

GoDoctor's hopes to lead a paradigm shift in healthcare services. The idea emerged when Jain’s friend and fellow co-founder Rahul Shokeen suffered a spinal injury: imagine consulting over 30 doctors across the globe, then receiving almost as many conflicting diagnoses. Researching the viability of a technology platform that matches the right doctor with patients, they discovered a bigger issue.

"Knowledge is not being shared among the medical community," Jain says.

It wasn't until 2014 that the gates opened briefly among the profession via social media and messaging apps, he explains. But the industry's preferred services Facebook and WhatsApp ultimately weren't suitable. Posts reached people outside the profession; messaging discussions became hard to follow as more specialists joined the conversation.

"That killed a lot of the electricity around sharing information." Which is where GoDoctor comes in. "If we create a platform that is unique for the medical community, professionals will be able to understand, relate, and help when assistance is needed."

Fascinated by computers since his teens, Jain dreamed of a career in technology. Upon completing high school in Delhi, his mother suggested continuing studies in Sydney, where she has also studied. UTS emerged during his research. "The course excited me because you could choose your own subjects and structure it based on your areas of interest."

He fondly recalls a particular project at the end that required recruiting team members. "I did what most people didn’t do: I chose 10 people from different cultural backgrounds, which gave a much deeper picture of communication issues and barriers prevalent in cross cultural businesses." He too had his share of barriers to overcome. Born in Africa, Jain studied for a decade under the British education system. When the family returned to India during his high school years, it was a complete culture shock. For starters, he couldn’t read or write the local language. "It was a nightmare – but it shaped me into who I am today."

One could describe Jain as being intensely driven and possessing a keen eye for business. Mindful of the cost to his parents as an international student in Sydney, he vowed to excel and be financially independent. Within two years of completing his degree, he had already established two successful computer hardware businesses; the latter made $15 million within a year. After a break to take stock in 2008, he embarked on software development with Solentive, a former customer. Soon after, he was consulting for universities, companies and government departments wanting to grow or become more efficient – while completing an MBA.

“Everyone is on the same wavelength. The Australian education system builds an amaing thought process. There's a sense of compassion and empathy”
– Anubhav Jain

Although he became an Australian citizen, desire for change and new challenges brought Jain back to India in 2010. He established Natural People, which imported international health and nutrition products. When costs became prohibitive, he pivoted to championing local brands, increasing revenue up to $24 million in three months for some. "It's instinct fuelled with knowledge," he says about the development of his business acumen. "Being in touch with myself first and the environment. I’ve been put in quite amazing environments.

" Soon drawn back to technology, he co-founded Mobilous, a platform that enables non-technical people to build apps for Android and iOS. The move to GoDoctor, a mobile app that offers similar experiences to LinkedIn and Facebook, seems natural. Features include alumni groups and referrals. Jain says more will be introduced when the platform rolls out globally.

 

Travel between Singapore and Delhi has brought Jain in touch with the international UTS alumni community. The connection is instant. "Everyone is on the same wavelength," he says. "The Australian education system builds an amazing thought process. There’s a sense of compassion and empathy." Passionate about nurturing sustainable entrepreneurs, he also recently helped an Australian photographer set up a business in India .

Working in a different culture has been an ordeal for her, but Jain believes that challenges yield rewards. "Put yourself in situations that make you feel uncomfortable. You will excel tremendously."

Story by Amos Wong
Photography by Kevin Cheung