Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is set to assume a much more prominent role in global healthcare and Eu Yan Sang will be at the forefront driving this momentum. Chairman of Eu Yan Sang Malaysia, Dato’ Anne Eu, shares her perspective on this development.
Worldwide, primary healthcare is moving towards a more integrative and holistic approach and conventional medicine is now being combined with what has been misleadingly termed “alternative medicine”, TCM being one of such forms.
In fact, TCM as a body of health wisdom and practice even predates other forms of medicine and healthcare, given its history which goes back thousands of years ago.
Dato’ Anne Eu raises an interesting point: “Since the beginning of time, people have turned to herbs and plants for healing illnesses and it is rather ironic that herbal medicine is now regarded as an alternative while the relatively newer science of synthetic drugs is considered mainstream.”
This perspective is largely a Western view and the situation has also come about because TCM, as well as other forms of medicine, has been wrongly maligned by incidents caused by unqualified or unscrupulous practitioners and companies who have misrepresented the profession and the respective medical disciplines.
“Eu Yan Sang would not have lasted more than 130 years and could not have grown to be the leading TCM healthcare company in Asia if our products did not have the claimed efficacies. Our reputation and the quality of our products have earned us the trust of generations and that is why we are where we are today”, explains Dato’ Anne Eu.
But with better awareness and understanding and with the important word-of-mouth recommendations of people who have had their health issues resolved by TCM, the acceptance of TCM is growing fast, even in the West.
In Malaysia itself, Eu Yan Sang’s base has also expanded beyond the traditional Chinese franchise. While it previously only had a predominantly Chinese- educated customer base, the patrons at Eu Yan Sang outlets now also include the English-educated Chinese as well as non-Chinese.
This Malaysian trend (as well as the international trend) augurs well for Eu Yan Sang as the company already has the ambitions and plans to further expand its business footprint in Malaysia and the Eu Yan Sang Group is also looking at broadening its international horizons.
“E”quipped for the challenge ahead
On how well the company and the group is prepared for the ambitious goals to accelerate growth of the company, especially TCM based products, Dato’ Anne Eu says, “ We have the 4 Es. First, is the Eu Yan Sang name itself which is an Established Entity with a distinguished heritage of over 130 years. Then, we also have the Expertise, Experience and Excellence in Product Quality and these factors are the important considerations qualifying us for the task.
The Way Forward
Being qualified is one thing but having the right strategic direction is equally important. Dato’ Anne Eu simplifies the explanation on strategic development by using the 4Cs : “ The first C is Customer Focus. We are very customer-focussed and we keep tabs on the pulse of what the customer wants and needs. For example, we developed ready-to-drink bird’s nest because we understand that given today’s hectic lifestyles, most people may not have the time to double-boil bird’s nest or may not know exactly how to prepare it. By combining high quality with convenience, we are able to satisfy the demands of today’s discerning consumers”.
She continues further : “The second C is Continuous Innovation and Improvement. Unlike other TCM companies, we employ modern management approaches and we integrate ancient medical wisdom with modern science. We do research and provide scientific support for our products, use the latest technology in manufacturing and set high quality standards which are stringently adhered to. This way, consumers get the best of East and West ”.
Dato’ Anne Eu explains the 3rd.C as Collaborative Efforts and Strategic Alliances. “This is very much applicable to international outreach as it provides a fast-track access with a business partner who is well-positioned to add value to the business in the targeted market”.
And to round it off, the 4th. C in the equation is the Commitment to Caring. “This is the fundamental philosophy of the company and as I’ve always said, Eu Yan Sang has never been just a commercial enterprise. We have maintained ( and will always maintain ) the founder’s vision and this principle has gotten us here today and will still propel us to greater heights”, she beams.
TCM’s current share of the healthcare market is just the tip of the iceberg. Globally, the healthcare industry is a trillion dollar business and there is still so much more room for TCM to grow and occupy its rightful place in caring for mankind. And Eu Yan Sang will be leading the charge.