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Featured Alumni

Hemen Ruparel
Name: Hemen Ruparel
Batch: PGP 1993
Hemen is our alumnus from the class of 1993. He is currently the CEO of Samex Agency, one of India’s largest agri-exporting firms, with a multi-crore rupee turnover.


Hemen joined the family business in 1993 and successfully navigated it into a major international player. Under his leadership, the company has won numerous awards for outstanding performance in the export of spices from India.


What has been your career path after graduating from IIM Lucknow?

The thought of getting a job never agreed with me. I always wanted to do something on my own and was never happy working for someone else. In 1993, exports were expected to grow at 15-20 percent. Agricultural export was one of the key thrust areas for the government. Fortunately, my family had an export business in the Middle East and there was a lot of potential there. However, I needed some experience before considering a jump into the business. During placements, no company had job profiles I was looking for. Corporates did not excite me as I could not see myself playing a relatively minor role in the overall operations. Besides, the whole idea of getting a job was to get experience and not just skills. So, I opted out of placements.
I plunged directly into the business and learnt the ropes and best practices on my own. I was looking at new openings and did not want to deal in the Middle East where the family business had presence. Around that time, sanctions were lifted on South Africa and trade was allowed. It was a good challenge and I started my career with exporting spices to South Africa.

Tell us a more about your company – Samex Agency.

Samex is an Export House dealing in Whole Spices and Green Cardamom, in particular. In 2007-08, we were No. #3 amongst the Green Cardamom exporters from India. We are the largest suppliers of Green Cardamom in private label to the Middle East and also, launched our own brand last year. We were growing exponentially till 2000-01 in whole spices and had become the second largest suppliers to Unilever South Africa from India. Due to the 2001 Gujarat earthquake, we suffered a jolt and lost our entire capital, stocks, assets and major customers. Since then, we changed our focus to Green Cardamom which we could handle with the capacities left with us. We are a small firm and expanding. We aim to continuously innovate and do better things in a better way always.

Read the complete interview here

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