Founder & CEO
IVD tests are essential in healthcare as they aid in disease detection, early intervention, and personalized treatment. Additionally, IVD tests play a role in personalized medicine by customizing treatment plans based on an individual's genetic information. Virtue Diagnostics, an innovative IVD company, specialises in infectious disease, cancer, and chronic disease diagnostics. The company's primary objective is to leverage its diverse range of technology platforms to offer clinical solutions for patients across various disease stages. These solutions encompass early screening, initial diagnosis, treatment monitoring, and management of minimal residual disease. Johnson Zhang, the CEO & Founder of Virtue Diagnostics, has been instrumental in driving the organization's success. With his leadership, Virtue Diagnostics has introduced cutting-edge IVD tests that have a positive impact on improving human well-being. In an intimate interview, Johnson Zhang offered profound insights into the functioning of IVD and highlighted Virtue Diagnostics' pivotal role in driving industry transformation.
Can you provide a concise overview of your professional background and experiences and the driving force behind your daily routines?
I have amassed more than two decades of experience in the invitro diagnostic industry. Initially, I ventured into entrepreneurship and successfully established a company in China, dedicated to developing new technologies. This endeavour encompassed various aspects such as manufacturing, registration, and building a proficient commercial team. Subsequently, our company attracted the attention of a multinational US-based company, leading to its acquisition in 2009. Transitioning into the second phase of my career, I assumed a senior management position for the APAC region within the multinational organization, where I served as a pack leader for the diagnostic group. Over the span of approximately ten years, we experienced remarkable growth, catapulting the diagnostic business from a small scale of around $10 million to an impressive $400 million. Embarking on a new chapter in 2020, I initiated the establishment of Virtue Diagnostics, a company that places significant emphasis on diagnostic opportunities in emerging countries.
How has your journey to success unfolded over 22 years? What is your mantra for achieving and sustaining success?
Diverse experiences and perspectives have influenced my journey towards my success. Initially, my focus was on the local market, where I prioritized understanding customer needs and delivering high-quality products and services. Transitioning to a multinational company broadened my global outlook while maintaining a strong emphasis on local customization and tailored solutions for customers. This approach has played a vital role in driving our accomplishments. In my current endeavour, I continue to adhere to a similar strategy, sourcing cutting-edge technologies globally to meet the unique demands of emerging markets. By addressing both recognized and unmet needs, we provide well-suited solutions that contribute to our ongoing success.
Could you tell us about the unique experiences China Europe International Business School offers and what did you learn from the campus beyond academics?
CEIBS has offered me an exceptional academic journey that has expanded my perspectives beyond my industry. Through exploring diverse microeconomies and industries, I have gained a deeper understanding of different viewpoints. One of the standout aspects of CEIBS is the chance to collaborate with classmates from varied backgrounds, including government institutions and various industries. Working together on case studies has provided valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities faced by different companies, fostering profound learning. Overall, my experience at CEIBS has been immensely enriching, enhancing my knowledge and understanding.
How do you characterize Virtue Diagnostics as a company and its current market standing?
Through our recent acquired a Brazilian IVD company - Labtest , Virtue Diagnostics has achieved a significant level of operational efficiency. As a new company, we are committed to catering to the specific needs of emerging countries. We recognize that different countries have varying levels of technological development, with some, like China, requiring advanced solutions, while others may have slower technology adoption. Our approach goes beyond mere product sales—we aim to support the growth of local industries by introducing and nurturing new technologies. Our focus is on building local capabilities and establishing ourselves as trusted local partners. This distinctive approach sets us apart from competitors as we strive to provide customized solutions and establish a strong local presence. In essence, while we operate globally, our primary goal is to provide customized solutions and be a local company in the countries we serve.
Describe your leadership style and the principles or strategies you employ to guide your team.
Certainly, the key and foremost aspect of my leadership approach is to establish a clear vision and strategy for the company. It is crucial that every member of the team understands our goals and direction we are heading in. Additionally, I believe in recruiting strong leaders who can contribute to the sucessful achievement of our strategy. We focus on building a unified and capable team that aligns with our unique approach. Throughout my experience, I have learned the significance of setting clear targets and assembling the right team to achieve those targets. I strive to continually motivate and empower my team members, fostering their growth alongside the company. Ultimately, this is of utmost importance to me.
What is the ultimate goal or destination you envision for the future?
Our vision is to expand our presence in emerging countries, with a specific focus on the field of diagnostics. We aim to establish ourselves as a prominent local player by developing local manufacturing capabilities and transferring our product offerings. Our goal is to grow alongside these countries and their industries, ultimately becoming one of the leading local players in the emerging markets we operate in.
Johnson Zhang, Chief Executive Officer & Founder, Virtue Diagnostics
Johnson Zhang is a visionary leader, illuminating the path of innovation in the field of medicine with his unwavering dedication. He has spearheaded the introduction of cutting-edge technologies, shaping the landscape of medical advancements.