Back in 2011, Dr Andy Adhiwana was on the verge of a successful career in medicine. As the first-born son of a highly regarded cardiologist, Dr Adhiwana graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery and Doctorate of Medicine from the prestigious Heidelberg University in Germany. Yet, his enthusiasm for the profession was diminishing. He found the work repetitious and lacked the dynamism he sought. He had little interest in the repertoire of conducting anamneses and clinical examinations, running diagnostic tests or writing prescriptions. Nonetheless, he was grateful for the rigorous training, in which he gained not only technical medical knowledge but also important characteristics – diligence, discipline, perseverance and attention to details.
So, in spite of his distinction in medicine, Dr Adhiwana pursued an interest in business and enrolled in the Master of Business Administration programme with the National University of Singapore. He was subsequently awarded a Master of Business Administration degree. In 2013, he made a firm decision to enter the business world by accepting a role as the Business Development Manager of Auric Pacific Group Limited.
Auric Pacific is a Singapore incorporated investment holding company involved in a diverse range of businesses, which include the distribution of fast-moving consumer goods, food manufacturing and retailing, restaurant as well as food court management. Listed on the Mainboard of the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited, Auric Pacific’s businesses and operations are present in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.
In 1997, the Lippo Group took a controlling stake in Auric Pacific. This was the first and main vehicle of the Lippo Group in Singapore, which is run by Dr Stephen Riady. During his tenure, Auric Pacific focused on various property development projects. It was not until 2006 when Dr. Riady acquired OUE Limited that Auric Pacific shifted its focus to the food business.
Previously run by professional management, Auric Pacific stepped into a new era in 2014, with the appointment of Dr Adhiwana, a substantial shareholder, as an Executive Director. Having joined the company in 2013 as a Business Development Manager and having moved through Auric Pacific’s six subsidiaries, Dr Adhiwana understood the operations and business functions of each subsidiary. He identified key challenges and growth areas, created a strategic plan, and did not hesitate to make the bold decisions to rationalize some non-performing and non-core businesses while streamlining operations. As a result of the business rationalization, Auric Pacific transformed itself and became a more robust organization with a renewed focus on growing the Group’s most iconic consumer brands – Sunshine Bread, SCS Butter and Buttercup, as well as Food Junction food courts.
In previous years, senior management employed a centralized organizational structure which meant planning and operating decisions for the entire organization came from the head office. As a move to increase efficiency and expand business operations, Dr Adhiwana conceived a systematic delegation of authority. The move gave senior management better focus on broader strategic planning whilst front line managers were able to act with divisional level authority. He also adopted a particularly effective way to communicate corporate priorities to business units – the pen and paper. Unconventionally, business unit managers received a personal letter from Dr Adhiwana which dictated operational objectives and aligned them with corporate strategy. The directive also articulated synergistic needs between business units – necessary to realize the Group’s corporate ambitions.
As of May this year, Dr Andy Adhiwana was appointed the Chief Executive Officer of Auric Pacific. Under Dr Adhiwana’s leadership, Auric Pacific saw healthy profits and growth. Nevertheless, he is far from complacent and has set his eyes on higher goals, believing that the Company has yet to reach its full potential. “To take the company to another level, you need a bold vision, an ambition or even a dream.” Dr Adhiwana is now spearheading various projects to uplift the image of the Auric Pacific corporate brand and its consumer brands. Aggressive marketing efforts are in place to unseat market share from competitors and regular board discussions are held to track the progress of the Group’s growth objectives.
Additionally, there is an increased emphasis on giving back to society and the promotion of a healthier lifestyle. Health-focused, innovative products have been introduced by the Group’s manufacturing division, which also supports various charities year-round.
Dr Adhiwana is also a firm believer in the importance of maintaining high standards of corporate governance and financial transparency. In 2015, Auric Pacific ranked among the top 50 out of more than 600 listed companies in the Governance and Transparency Index (GTI), which assesses the financial transparency of companies based on their annual announcements. Dr Adhiwana will often cite his devotion to Christianity and family as his source of determination and social conscience. “My faith keeps me grounded, both in the face of adversity and in good times. I am constantly mindful that this business is here to serve a greater cause – God, my family and the community.”