The CEMS Global Alliance is a purpose led organization, powered by our beliefs that great leadership starts with self-leadership and societal progress requires continual exploration. In this series of interviews, we take a look at CEMS students and alumni that are contributing to make this world a more open, sustainable and inclusive world.
Patrik undertook a Master’s degree in Finance at Stockholm School of Economics. He says,
CEMS was a fantastic experience, with exchange semester at HSG and job assignment with ABB in Switzerland. I had such a lovely social experience through the CEMS program and I was proud of being the first co-president of the CEMS Student Board, where we worked hard to get the CEMS student community going and shaping the CEMS program to fit with students’ social and academic ambitions back then. Since then, I have pursued PhD in Data Sciences with Karolinska Institute and hold an Associate professorship.
Could you please tell us about your involvement with the start-ups, especially in the life sciences network in more detail?
I have been part of building a few start-ups myself over the years and have a passionate affinity to entrepreneurial mindsets – “To make the impossible possible”. Over the past 10 years I have worked with acquisitions of tech companies, venture investing as well as angel investing. I enjoy the intersect of data driven innovation and complex technologies combining hardware and software. My passion areas are technologies solving for global challenges in healthcare and climate change and I am a believer of that biology will be the solution for a lot of innovation challenges. Today I am a board member of seven different technology companies covering everything from biomanufacturing, healthcare technologies to novel therapies in patients with great unmet need. I am constantly on the hunt of the next unique technology start-up with global ambitions to solve for challenges of our times in healthcare and climate change.
What do you think are the 3 things that have personally shaped you and motivated you to contribute to the life sciences world?
Firstly, I come from a family dedicated to healthcare and grew up in seeing a number of challenges the healthcare industry and life sciences industry is suffering from. This became one of the prime backgrounds for me to be associated with the domain.
Secondly, with a back-ground as a researcher in data sciences I strongly realized the power in AI and data driven innovation - and the global untapped opportunity for innovation in utilizing complex data sets - the healthcare and life sciences industries combined generate the largest amount of data across industries and is also the sector underutilizing the power of data the most.
Lastly, I have always wanted to achieve impact throughout my career - and through innovation in healthcare, life sciences and biology we can touch some of the largest societal problems we face: health issues and climate challenges.
What steps did you take to get to where you are today?
I always knew that I wanted to dedicate time to improve healthier lives - but my path was never a straight journey. I believe I was a contrarian coming out of school - joining a start-up in 2001 when my class mates started with banks and consultancy firms. And I guess I have followed my instinct with curiosity to learn and make a difference through my various jobs. I cannot find a better place than where I am today - working in the venture capital industry with focus on deep-tech (research-based innovation) with impact across multiple technology and industry verticals and am amazed every day meeting with passionate entrepreneurs wanting to make a difference in the world through technology.
How did the CEMS environment and community helped you on your professional journey, if anything? What top 3 things would you advise current CEMS students?
Few cents from my end would be to learn languages, spend time in different cultures and continue to have an open mind and curiosity to learn. The CEMS experience is a terrific platform for this. The CEMS program catalysed an open mindset and curiosity to transcend cultural and geographical boundaries and being an extensive and warm network of friends at a formative stage in my life. I am truly grateful to the CEMS opportunity that has definitely shaped my personality today. Venture capital is not what many people think - the two most desirable characteristics in profiles thinking of this industry would be: never ending curiosity and courage. The best venture capital firms are contrarians, taking bold decisions to back winning global technology companies longer. I believe such attitude can be harboured amongst CEMSies and help them grow in whatever domain they choose.