In March 2021, we reached the twelve-month anniversary of when the world declared the COVID-19 pandemic. Who would have imagined the year that we were about to experience?
At the beginning of March 2020 when COVID began to spiral, events started to unfold quickly at Quotient Sciences. Almost overnight, we had to transition half of our workforce into remote working and many of our colleagues needed to self-isolate for extended periods as the virus struck. Operational schedules were in a high state of flux as our customers also managed the consequences of the pandemic on their businesses.
On a personal front, Friday 13th March was the first day that I experienced COVID symptoms, being quickly followed by most of the leadership team also succumbing to infection. We needed an all-hands-on-deck approach to manage the business through the turbulence.
Our immediate focus was to ensure stability and to maintain, as best we could, project delivery for our customers. I was inspired by the commitment and dedication that was displayed by my Quotient colleagues and this was recognised by some excellent feedback from customers and key stakeholders.
As we entered into the summer of 2020, we had to decide whether to “stick or twist” on two important projects that were underway. We had initiated a rebranding project earlier in the year and were about to begin a project to acquire the UK business, Arcinova in Alnwick. We went back and forth in our deliberations, but it became clear that everyone was aligned. We wanted to emerge from the pandemic in a stronger position than we entered, and both projects were essential components of our growth strategy.
We decided to “go for it”.
The “Soul of Quotient” – underpinning our “Molecule to Cure, Fast” rebrand
During my fifteen years at Quotient, I have always had an itch that our branding did not quite capture the passion and excitement that exists within the business. Most of our leaders (including myself) are scientists at heart and communicating emotions and feelings if they cannot be underpinned by data and logic does not come naturally. We needed help.
The head of healthcare, Silvia Oteri, at Permira (our private equity partner) recommended that we meet Peter Economides, a brand strategist with broad and deep experience across multiple industries including healthcare. Our very first meeting with Peter was inspiring and gave me confidence that this branding project was going to be different from previous attempts.
Peter encouraged us to harness the “Quotientness” of Quotient Sciences. Putting into words our passion for building a differentiated business that helps to accelerate the development of new drugs for patients in need and makes a difference to humanity as a whole. Our commitment to being “science-rich”, striving to deliver excellence in customer service, and to continually looking to innovate our customer proposition. A business that recognizes the importance of its employees and supports their growth, so that each individual can achieve their fullest potential – with a strong competitive drive to win for our customers, investors, but most of all for the patients that will use the medicines we have helped to develop. To me, this is the soul of Quotient Sciences.
Our brand also had to be future-proofed, to provide the business with a platform for growth, enabling us to spread our wings and grow, and to propel the business to its full potential.
A central component of our rebrand is our Manifesto. This reflects our purpose, our focus, who we are, and what we do.
Where science and agility integrate and combine. Cutting through silos across a range of drug development capabilities. Saving precious time and money in getting drugs to patients. Everything we do for our customers is driven by an unswerving belief that ideas need to become solutions, molecules need to become cures, fast. Because humanity needs solutions, fast.
I am thrilled with this Manifesto. It captures exactly what Quotient Sciences stands for. It is our true North to guide my colleagues and me, as we develop the business. Our mission is to accelerate the development of new drugs for patients, by breaking down silos to deliver integrated programs, which we deliver to our customers with excellence.
If we do right by our customers, and right by our colleagues, I have always believed that we will succeed.
As I write this article, the COVID-19 vaccination programs are well underway. We appear to have weathered the worst of this pandemic and as we approach some form of normality, we are emerging with our rebrand in place and the Arcinova acquisition complete. Twelve months ago, I would have “snapped your hand off” if I had been offered this position back then. Our focus now is all on “getting back to business”. Delivering for our customers and helping to progress new medicines for patients. I couldn’t ask for more.