The FCCS Platform for Startups & Entrepreneurs is a place to meet and network. In order to share experiences and visions, the committee launched the ‘Entrepreneur Spotlight’: a series of interviews with successful French Entrepreneurs in Singapore.
Interview with Patrick Veron, Founder and Director, East West Innovative Solutions (EWIS)
A few words about your background
I was born in France and I have lived in different parts of the world for most of my life. I spent more than 25 years working for Fortune 500 American and European multinational conglomerates across diverse industries. My career predominantly revolves around business & product development, marketing, corporate strategy and general management.
I have a penchant for incepting and developing start-ups, and helping mid-size companies to find their way into burgeoning markets. As an ex-CEO of CARC India, for example, I have developed this start-up from infancy to a multimillion-dollar entity with hundreds of employees within three years.
The decades of experience has deepened my understanding on what it takes to do business successfully in different continents and how to do it. This led me to strike on my own and establish ‘East West Innovative Solutions (EWIS)’ Private Limited, a management consultancy firm. Based in Singapore, we provide business development ecosystem to companies that wish to grow in Asia.
Why leave a MNC environment to start your own company?
Working for a reputable MNC, and climbing the ladder of success only got me to a certain point. I needed to achieve more and my entrepreneurial spirit pushed me to carve a niche for myself. So, I left a cushy job to build a platform that allows me to get my own ideas into practice. The thrill of writing my own script every day provides me with an incredible sense of freedom. However, I’m not spared from the pain of starting a business from ground zero. It’s both humbling and truly fulfilling when my efforts see fruition.
What services do you provide?
EWIS provides a complete suite of services ranging from strategic consultancy to sales and business development outsourcing. We provide complimentary services to Chambers of Commerce or Trade Missions. While they help companies to understand markets in general and provide guidance on how to establish their presence in foreign countries, we at EWIS provide customized approaches to help companies to best target their markets and expand their business. More specifically, we help our customers grow their sales with effective go-to-market strategies. We bring market knowledge and insight to help them prosper in sectors such as energy, telecommunications, big data, cloud, network and cyber security or Internet of Things. We engage their prospects jointly or on their behalf. It is critical to ensure that our customers enjoy their journey towards rewarding results with us.
You mentioned that you like to work with start-ups. Any particular reasons?
I have been in that boat throughout my life. I should say I am quite seasoned walking in unchartered territories and living these growth challenges. And I take passion in sharing that experience, expertise and knowledge. I focus on advising entrepreneurs on how to best bring their solutions to the global market with the right business strategy and go-to-market. There are a lot of intricacies that textbooks alone won’t offer them.
Why did you set up your business in Singapore?
The ease of doing business and geographical location! The country provides excellent infrastructure and a sound investment climate. Incorporating a company in Singapore is a walk in the park. The government also offers attractive tax incentives and grant schemes, especially for start-ups. Besides, the country is located at an advantageous location geographically, allowing easy accessibility to the rest of the Asian countries. Last but not least, the sound educational system and safe environment encourages investors with children to settle down in Singapore easily.
How do you plan to grow your business?
I envision expanding EWIS presence around Asia, with Singapore as the headquarter. In so doing, we will continue to hire the right talent and expand our service offerings, dancing in waltz with our customers’ needs as they progress with us.
In all that we do, we are guided by our core values. We believe in integrity, honesty and transparency, I see these as key to earning our clients' trust. We tailor our business solutions by listening attentively to our clients' needs. Being in the tech realm, we must be nimble to keep up with the fast changing dynamics of the industry.
What was the most difficult challenge to overcome on your entrepreneurial journey?
Uncertainty is omnipresent! Regardless the degree of our determination, things happen slower than we anticipate. The road to success is punctuated with setbacks, delays, unfulfilled expectations, trials and tribulations. I have to keep reminding myself to be prepared for slow days. This is inevitable, dealing with that is part of any entrepreneur's journey, but it’s not easy especially for action-driven people like me. Time management and focus are important. As the saying goes, success is derivative of hard work, pragmatism and ingenuity at play. We draw lessons from failure and stay charted on achieving the end goals.
Could you share a few tips for new entrepreneurs?
First and foremost, have a clear vision of what we want to do. Loving what we do is important. We have to be absolutely resilient. One needs to have ‘can-do’ spirit, flexibility, creativity, appetite for risks and willingness to go extra miles to understand the target markets. To that end, we have to constantly differentiate ourselves and revisit our value propositions. Our clients must believe that their money is well spent! Last but not least, build a team that shares our aspiration and is equally passionate about our ventures.
What is your business philosophy?
Our goal is to serve our clients with their full trust and confidence. We take pride in ensuring that their interest always comes first and in providing them high quality services with transparency and timely deliverables.
What is your business motto?
‘You innovate, we support your journey in Asia Pacific’ is our corporate tagline.
And finally, what’s your motto in life?
I share Winston Churchill’s words, that ‘success is not final, failure is not fatal, the courage to continue is what counts’.
East West Innovative Solutions (EWIS)
The views and opinions expressed in these columns do not necessarily reflect those of the FCCS members and management.