‘Embrace risk,’ says Director of the Year for Innovation 2019

Director of the Year Awards Arnab Basu

Every day in the approach to Christmas, we’ll speak to winners from the recent finals of IoD Director of the Year Awards. Today it’s Dr Arnab Basu MBE, CEO of Kromek Group, who won the Innovation – in partnership with Hastee – category

With a PhD in physics from Durham University, Basu began his leadership career at his family’s firm, manufacturing materials for the electronics industry. He founded Kromek, a supplier of radiation-detection equipment, in 2003 and has won a series of awards since then, including EY Entrepreneur of the Year in 2009. This latest accolade acknowledges his continued commitment to innovation in a highly competitive market.

How do you come up with your most innovative ideas? “By listening – to our customers, the team here, people working in the sectors we serve – and thinking about how we can solve their problems. Innovation is simply about matching what is possible to what is needed.”

How do you ensure good governance? “Ethical behaviour starts at the top. Put the right structures in place, so that this filters through the organisation and everyone knows what is expected of them.”

What has been the toughest challenge you have surmounted? “It’s a serious task to transform technology developed in the lab into world-class products, yet bringing all our stakeholders with us has been the bigger challenge. Communicating a strong vision in a simple fashion is crucial to keeping everyone motivated.”

The biggest lesson you’ve learnt? “Embrace risk – you can only do so much to control it. It will always be your neighbour.”



James Herbert, CEO of Hastee: “Hastee allows workers access to a portion of their earned income on demand, reducing financial stress for the worker, while increasing productivity and engagement in the workplace. Hastee has been a leading innovator by restructuring the traditional pay cycle – no mean feat. Innovation is at the heart of our business, so sponsoring the Innovation category of the Director of the Year Awards was a no-brainer for us.”

Entries are now open for the 2020 IoD Director of the Year Awards – click here for more info and to nominate


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Director is the magazine for business leaders. Free to IoD members and available to purchase through subscription, each edition is full of insightful interviews with entrepreneurs and company directors.

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