Indian Dx giant emerges

SRL has emerged in Southern Asia as one of the biggest diagnostics companies in the world, Forbes India reports, coming close to rivaling American stalwarts such as Quest ($DGX) as it modernizes and expands its healthcare lab-test offerings at home.

SRL has built its operation from fewer than 20 labs in 2006 to 230 network labs, 12 large reference labs and 4,000 collection points, according to the story. And its revenue is expected to reach 10 times higher in 2013 than it was in 2006 (to 700 crore in revenue, about $106.5 million), thanks to SRL's organic and acquisition-related growth.

Forbes reports that SRL has expanded with a focus on doubling volumes from current capacity and ramping up scale. The magazine also gives the Indian juggernaut props for diversifying into areas such as wellness; SRL now has 20 wellness centers across the country that work as both pathology labs and preventative healthcare operations.

Consider, though, that diagnostics generates about 3% of India's $60 billion healthcare sector, a fact that shows the industry remains relatively small in the country compared to other healthcare sectors. Forbes also notes that the diagnostics sector in India struggles with credibility because diagnostics labs face few regulatory barriers and are left with little or no accreditation to pursue. SRL says it owns at least 25% of the 1,000 credible pathology labs in the country, making it stand out from the others.

But as the article notes, diagnostics influence a large majority of medical decisions made now, so SRL's emergence, growth and increasing clout put it in a strong position to shape the industry and policy in the world's second-most-populous country.

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