Exceptional leaders are hard to come by, but are easy to spot. They are the driving forces behind an organization’s success. They inspire their employees, boost their morale, and always care for their well-being. They are trustworthy, confident, positive, daring, and face challenges with a game face on.
One such eclectic leader with an indomitable zeal to succeed is Jorge Cortell, the Founder and CEO of Kanteron Systems. He believes in “leading by example”, starting with hard work. He also feels that other traits like vision, determination, or the ability to communicate and convince are very important.
Jorge’s Journey to Prominence
Jorge’s career has taken many turns, from professional basketball player with a career cut too short, to different positions at a family business, to lecturing in various universities, to starting up 8 companies.
All those changes have exposed him to many different situations, from which he has always tried to learn as much as possible. “But the main two lessons learned so far are that you must put your heart and soul on what you do, and that there is always another lesson to be learned.” asserts Jorge.
He feels that he was born motivated. “I can be very single-minded, with a laser-focus and determination that I found it to be uncommon in other colleagues.” asserts Jorge. Regarding role models, he tries not to have idols, or imitate anyone. He admires many people like Marie Skłodowska Curie, Morihei Ueshiba, Peter Kropotkin, David de Ugarte, Maya Angelou, Lebron James, and Malala Yousifazi.
About Kanteron Systems
Kanteron Systems is transforming patient care through the combination of imaging and genomics. A privately held Healthcare IT company founded in 2005, it helps healthcare providers manage imaging and genomic data effectively for precision medicine applications at the point of care.
The company aims to organize clinical information and make it accessible and useful, to eradicate disease before symptoms appear.
Facing and Overcoming Challenges
Jorge states “I have taken quite a few daring challenges and risks in my life, but it was always for a good cause, as I am not an adrenaline junkie or senseless thrill seeker.” According to Jorge, the biggest challenge in his life has been the founding and growth of Kanteron Systems, particularly the ‘pivot’ to their current Precision Medicine platform, after being motivated by his wife’s recurring cancer.
It has been a massive undertaking for Jorge to compete head-to-head with multinationals a thousand times bigger than Kanteron, coming up with technological solutions that were considered “impossible” at the time, and being first to market with a product that did not exist before, years ahead of the competition. He invested every last penny he had. He even had to ask his parents to put up part of their retirement fund for it. But luckily, it all worked out in the end.
Jorge believes a balanced work-family life is an achievement, not just for him, but for everyone in the company, as it is to have inspired thousands of activists and students, or to have raised two kids, and so on.
Describing some of his more “formal” achievements, Jorge mentions about various awards including:
- 2010– Spain Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Spanish Company with the Biggest Growth Potential, Spanish Young Businessman of the Year Award finalist
- 2012– National Champion in the European Business Awards, Bronze Award Company of the Year International Business Awards, “Best Clinical Poster Award” at Digital Pathology Association Congress
- 2013– IBM Beacon Award for Best Solution Healthcare and Life Sciences, Bronze Award Executive of the Year and Silver Award Company of the Year International Business Awards, Innovation of the Year Award, Frost & Sullivan “Select WOW! Findings from the 2013 RSNA Show floor”
- 2014– Markets&Markets “Major player” in the Digital Pathology market, Gartner “Hype Cycle for Healthcare Providers Technologies and Standards”
- 2015– Selected as a member of the ScaleUpClub 2015 by “Silicon Valley Comes to the UK” and featured by The Guardian and Business Insider UK (“Kanteron Systems could soon be a unicorn”), P&S Market Research Major player in the global digital pathology market
- 2016– Top 15% of analyzed software startups according to rating agency EarlyMetrics, Selected by the European Commission as Top European Scaleup and Next European Unicorn, California Impact Challenge in Precision Medicine Award, Selected among “the most promising emerging digital health companies” by TechTour, Digital Health Venture Forum award, “One of the hottest 50 UK tech startups superstars” by CityAM, Featured in the Frost & Sullivan report “Healthcare 2020—Business Model Transformation Guidebook”
- 2017– Named by Microsoft as “Digital Heroes” in Healthcare, “Best CEO in the Industry”, Chosen by Google as Strategic Technology Partners for Precision Medicine, Selected in the “Top 10 Genomics Solution Providers” by Pharma Tech Outlook Magazine
- 2018– Gamechangers Award, International Biomedical Informatics Company of the Year and International CEO Gamechanger of the Year, 2018.