Caliber Technologies sets sight on overseas markets
Usha Sharma plots the growth of a pharma and biotech focussed LIMS player
An untapped niche and a global opportunity, faith in the concept and confidence in the team were the drivers for Caliber Technologies. This information technology (IT) oriented company was founded in 2001 by Sathya Sekhar Surabhi, Founder, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), with a focus on solutions for the pharmaceutical and biotech industries.
The company’s management team consists of experienced marketing, software development, and finance personnel. Surabhi has over 15 years experience in a related industry, with domain expertise to conceive and develop products. Surabhi also worked as COO of a software company before setting up Caliber Technologies, adding to his operational management experience.
When the product is designed, keeping in mind the highest standards required for the pharma industry, it can be easily adapted to any other industry application, but the converse is not true. The company’s flagship product CaliberLIMS (Laboratory Information Management System) is designed for cutting edge technologies to help pharma and biotech companies. Over the years, it has been established as a market leader in pharma industry in India, where one has to comply with stringent international regulatory norms like electronic signatures and electronic records (21CFR PART 11), GLP, GAMP, etc. The implementation of CaliberLIMS, reduces the risk of regulatory non-compliance. CaliberLIMS is currently a LIMS with the maximum number of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) integrations in India and has been very successful in delivering value for money to the customers.
The company currently has three products in its basket. CaliberLIMS has variants known as—Enterprise, Caliber Pet-LIMS (a LIMS for analytical laboratories in oil and petrochemical industries) and Caliber CLAPS (Controlled Label Printing System).
Caliber also offers value-added services such as system validation and training for prospective users and managers. The validation service includes installation qualification (IQ), operational qualification (OQ) and performance qualification (PQ), with specially prepared qualification protocols.
Recently, the company’s CaliberLIMS SAP interface engine was certified by SAP global certification centre, as products that can be deployed effectively for extension of quality management (QM) functionality of SAP. Caliber has earned the crucial certifications like, XI–Extended interface through XML, Enterprise Portal: allowing Caliber LIMS to be fully integrated with SAP, ESOA–Enterprise Service Oriented Architecture and compatibility certification. These SAP certifications will allow Caliber to aggressively sell its LIMS product to manufacturers as an extension to existing or new SAP implementations.
CaliberLIMS is an effective tool for enterprise quality management for regulated industries, with the capability to integrate various enterprise applications like ERPs, SDMS/ECM, instruments, and messaging services. It is a 100 percent web technology based product from the design and adopting XML standards into LIMS. It can enhance the information in documents, simplify web automation, and integrate applications within or between organisations.
Caliber is among very few companies worldwide, which have developed products on internet technologies for regulated industries. The technology which is used in building the product is highly advanced and has several advantages in terms of total cost of ownership and recurring maintenance expenditure.
The scalability and availability over the internet are a great value addition. This stands tall as a testimony to the technical supremacy of the product. Recently, company has successfully implemented its Caliber PetroLIMS in Bharat Petroleum. In an unbelievably short time, it is networking with their 25 laboratories more than 1,000 users across India. “While there are lot of technology solution providers to pharma or biotech clients and the petroleum industry, we can confidently say that our technology solution is superior compared to other offerings in a number of ways,” said Surabhi.
Indian pharma companies are preferred customers of Caliber. Their strong endorsement about the product was instrumental in spreading their wings to other places. Currently, it has many pharma and biotech clients on their roster, like Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL), Aurobindo Pharma, Megawecare (Thailand), Unichem Laboratories, Dabur Oncology (UK), Dabur Pharma, US Vitamins, Wyeth, Matrix, Ajanta Pharma, NATCO etc. “Our customer support and quick turn around for the enhancements have been highly appreciated by customer. While CaliberLIMS was developed strict international standards and meets global compliance regulations, the product is priced very competitively due to its lower cost basis resulting from indigenous product development in India. Further, the cost of its implementation and customisation is significantly lower compared to its competitors, even for multiple users at multiple locations of an organisation,” Surabhi added.
The domain expertise of its key personnel is what sets Caliber above the rest since they understand business processes in regulated markets and can translate any requirements quickly into solutions.
The company plans to enter into verticals, such as petrochemical, food, agriculture and water treatment, by productising Caliber LIMS as ‘industry solutions’. Caliber is in the process of conceptualising and developing related products and services. One example is change management and deviation management software and large scale document management system for the regulated industry.
New zones to explore
Caliber established its US operations in early 2008 to cater to the US and European markets, and has been getting an excellent response for its products. “We are presently having our presence in the USA where we have a wholly owned subsidiary named Caliber Infosolutions INC headquartered in Pittsburgh,” Surabhi added. The company has taken big strides since its inception, reinforced by the fact that it was selected as one of the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 companies in India and Fast 500 companies in Asia during the year 2008. Caliber has won acclaim for being the first known company in India to build its product Caliber LIMS in Microsoft web technology and for being the first known such product interfaced with enterprise wide systems like SAP.
Caliber’s vision is to establish itself as a key player in the pharma LIMS arena within the next three years, especially in the US market. It envisions itself growing into a global company, with significant presence in the developed markets of US and Europe, and a dominant presence in fast growing markets in developing countries, where LIMS’ are starting to be incorporated. “We are looking for an opportunity through organic route, but it is too early to comment on this,” Surabhi averred.