A DARING switch from medicine to business proved to be the right "surgery" for Andy Adhiwana. Back in 2011, he was on the verge of a successful career in medicine, following the footsteps of the Adhiwana family.

As the first-born son of a famous cardiologist, he graduated with multiple medical degrees from the prestigious Heidelberg University in Germany.

Somehow, the chemistry didn't appear correct as he found the work repetitious and lacked the dynamism he sought.

So he quickly opted to make a clean surgical cut and used the same characteristics needed in medicine - diligence, discipline, perseverance and attention to detail - to pursue business. And it proved to be a gem of a choice.

He enrolled in the Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme at the National University of Singapore (NUS) and earned an MBA degree.

In 2013, he made a firm decision to enter the business world as the business development manager of Auric Pacific Group.

Auric Pacific is a Singapore incorporated investment holding company involved in a diverse range of businesses, which include the distribution of fast-moving consumer goods, food manufacturing and retailing, restaurant as well as food court management in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

Key challenges

He identified key challenges and growth areas, created a strategic plan, and did not hesitate to make bold decisions to rationalise some non-performing and non-core businesses while streamlining operations.

As a result of the business rationalisation, Auric Pacific transformed itself and became a more robust organisation with a renewed focus on growing the group's most iconic consumer brands - Sunshine Bread, SCS Butter and Buttercup, as well as Food Junction food courts.

As of May this year, he was appointed the chief executive officer of Auric Pacific.

Under Dr Adhiwana's leadership, Auric Pacific saw healthy profits and growth. But he was still ambitious and set his eyes on higher goals, believing that the company has yet to reach its full potential. He says: "To take the company to another level, you need a bold vision, an ambition or even a dream."

His advice to young startup entrepreneurs?

"In this day and age, some of the world's most innovative and meaningful ideas are coming from the young. Age is a number and not a disadvantage. I would say that setting high ambitions and keeping focused is the key. Be bold and have conviction of what your business represents," he says.

Dr Adhiwana often cites his devotion to Christianity and family as his source of determination and social conscience.

"My faith keeps me grounded, both in the face of adversity and in good times. I'm constantly mindful that this business is here to serve a greater cause - God, my family and the community."