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South Africa, Industrials
Specialized in the diagnosis and control of infectious diseases found in animals, Diagnotec employs advanced technology to perform early screening for the IPVN virus — a common virus afflicting salmon worldwide. By detecting and eliminating the IPVN virus prior to spawning, Geraldine and Ana Maria can prevent dissemination of pathogens to the next generation of salmon.
Since selection by Endeavor, the company expanded internationally, creating a strong sales presence in Chile, Sweden and Canada. Since then, the company formed relationships with leading Chilean biotech firms. In total, the number of jobs has grown by 733%. In 2008, Diagnotec sold a majority stake to Chilean lab Oratorios Andromico.
Both women have been recognized on various occasions for their advances in aquaculture and business (in 1999, after the successful launch of their first product, Geraldine was lauded as the Best Young Entrepreneur of 2000 in Chile). Diagnotec is currently in the process of patenting various products in Chile, Canada, the US and Europe, with a view to expanding beyond the salmon industry (its solutions are applicable to many other animals which compose varied productive industries) and is also patenting an antiviral formula, which has no existing competition in the worldwide market today. Additionally, the company is in current negotiations with large pharmaceutical multinationals in order to sell royalties for their products and services.
After the company separated its commercial business from its R&D division, Endeavor assisted with investor, strategy, and legal issues. In addition to local networking services, the Entrepreneurs have benefited from the global eMBA and G-Lab programs, Entrepreneur Summit, and various workshops.
Ana María remains active in the network and serves as a powerful example particularly for other women entrepreneurs.
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