Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, born on March 23, 1953, is a founder and Chairperson of Biocon and has been a pioneer in biosciences for more than 40 years. Her company's products have enabled thousands of patients with life-threatening conditions to receive treatment. In February 2013, her company raised $400 million from global investors such as Warburg Pincus, Cipla Ltd., and Hisense Company Ltd.Biocon was launched in 1978 when Dr Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw started a travel agency to provide people with an affordable way to see the world while leveraging Indias natural strengths - quality services delivered at competitive prices by knowledgeable staff who would arrange all their arrangements for them during their stay, so they could focus on enjoying themselves rather than planning.Her Early LifeDr Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw was born in Mumbai, India to a middle-class family. Her father Dr S. M. Shaw worked as a general practitioner and her mother was a housewife who also handled the day-to-day operations of the Mazumdar-Shaw Medical Centre, which Dr S M Shaw had started in South Mumbai in 1966 after being inspired by Fathima Mother Teresa during his visit to her Kolkata Hospital for the Dying destitute persons in 1959.From her childhood days, Kiran had felt driven to make a difference in society and it drove her wherever she went be it college or work - and eventually led to the formation of Biocon Limited.Her EducationDr Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw attended Bishop Cotton Girls High School and graduated in 1968. She then went on to study at Mount Carmel College, Bangalore, a University of Bangalore affiliate and completed her B.Sc in Zoology with second class in 1973. She also wanted to study medicine but she wasn't able to because she wasn't able to get a scholarship. She went on to study in Australia at Melbourne University, studying malting and brewing in 1974 and she graduated top of the class and obtained a degree as a master brewer in 1975.How She Established Biocon (Challenges, Journey)In 1972, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw returned to India and started her career with Mysore Brewery Limited as a brewery trainee. The brewing industry was then dominated by large multinational companies, and smaller players were struggling to make profits.In 1978, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw established Biocon Ltd. with an initial investment of ₹10,000 from her savings. Her vision was to develop affordable medicines for people with life-threatening illnesses, especially cancer and diabetes; help create jobs for educated youth in rural areas, and provide scientific solutions for farmers' problems through the introduction of value-added products.Dr Kira Mazumdar-Shaw and her team at Biocon Limited began with the idea of developing a range of affordable and accessible pharmaceuticals to treat people in rural areas where health care systems are weak. Some of the products that Biocon developed include Imigran (lanreotide) for the treatment of diabetes, and Agnosia Insulin Syrup which is used in low-cost diabetes management programmes in developing countries, among others.Biocon's main product is insulin glargine injection, which has successfully been marketed in more than 22 developed markets around the world. Her companys sales were estimated at more than $500 million a year before she sold it to Bayer AG for $1.Her Company, BioconBiocon is a biopharmaceutical company that was started by Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw in 1978 in the city of Bangalore. The company was initially named Biotechnic Laboratories and set up in a small office in the city of Bangalore, India.Biocon's first product was an antidote for organophosphate poisoning, which was earlier manufactured by international drug companies at high prices. Biocon's first anti-diabetic product, Agnosia Insulin Syrup took five years to develop and is now Indias most popular low-cost diabetes management solution.Biocon also developed a low-cost Insulin Glargine, which is the same product sold by international companies at high prices. The insulin glargine is now used in more than 60 countries around the world and it has become India's first insulin molecule to be approved and marketed worldwide.Biocon Limited became the first company in India to develop specific antibodies for autoimmune diseases like Rheumatoid Arthritis using recombinant DNA technology and was also among the few Pharma companies in India that obtained approval from the United States Food Drug Administration (USFDA) for its products.Biocon is a pioneer in the development of biosimilars and was the first Indian company to receive USFDA approval for a biosimilar product - risankizumab injection, an anti-cancer medicine.The first product developed by Biocon Ltd was an antidote for organophosphate poisoning. This product was earlier manufactured by international drug companies at high prices, but Biocon made it available to villagers at a reasonable price. This led to an increase in the use of organophosphates and resulted in crop yields per acre increasing considerably.Her Awards and AchievementsDr Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw has been awarded many times for developing several innovative products, which have made it possible to lower the prices for people in rural areas and improve their health. Her company received many awards for its innovative products and the way it has taken care of its customers needs.The company was awarded the Ashoka Millennium Award for its contribution to creating a safe and healthy society. Dr Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw was also honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award from World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland in 2007.She was also awarded by Uttar Pradesh government's department of Biotech Development under a programme called 'Nau Nahi Chahiye' (I Will not let go).Dr Kiran Mazumdar Shaw was also awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in the year 2015, which is the third highest civilian award in India. She was also conferred with an honorary doctorate from Cambridge University, the UK in 2016.She also received the LifeTime Achievement Award from World Economic Forum (WEF), Geneva, Switzerland in 2007 for leadership in innovative biotechnology and outstanding contribution toward creating a safe and healthy society.She was conferred with an honorary doctorate by the Schumpeter School of Business at Babson College, Massachusetts, USA in 2011.She has also been honoured by several foreign governments for her contribution to improving their health care system. She was awarded DK Mazumdar Memorial Award for Emergent Leadership by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology-Sloan School of Management for her outstanding leadership in making a major difference in society. She is only the second Indian after Narayan Murthy to receive this award from the MIT Sloan School of Management.Her Philanthropic ActivitiesShe is also a philanthropist who donates a huge percentage of her income to various NGOs. She has donated money and supported the Foundation for Rural Regeneration, a not-for-profit organisation that works in Indias rural areas to help farmers become more self-sufficient.She has also supported several charitable activities like the India-Israel Technological Innovation Fund, which works toward making products and services available in rural areas.She has also supported numerous healthcare projects in India. She donated a huge amount of money to Bhanu Charitable Trust which is involved with creating and providing laptops to students in rural areas, who cant afford them. Currently, she has helped a lot of women by providing them with Vitamin A supplements, which is one of her biggest initiatives for improving the lives of people in rural areas.How She is an Inspiration to WomenDr Mazumdar-Shaw is an inspiration to many women in so many ways. Knowing about Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, She showed them how successful they could become in their careers.She became the only woman to be featured in Fortune Indias Top 40 Most Powerful Business Women in India for four years. She remains the only woman managing director of a pharma company listed on the NSE.She has shown that women can be just as successful as men and still have a fulfilling personal life by being a mother, wives and successful entrepreneurs.She has also been involved with many organisations that encourage entrepreneurship among women like the Women's Forum for the Economy and Society (WFES).ConclusionDr Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw is an amazing personality who has achieved many great things in her life. She has shown that women can achieve anything if they put their minds to it.She never let anything come in between her success and her personal life and she has set an example for many women.FAQsWho is Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw?Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw is a founder and Chairperson of Biocon and has been a pioneer in biosciences for more than 40 years.Who founded Biocon?Biocon was founded by Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw in 1978.Can biotechnology companies grow without proper research to improve their products?Research is important for biotechnology companies because it helps them develop technologies that transform their products into blockbuster drugs.