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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Europ Continents’ long involvement with the healthcare industry in Cambodia

Thibaud Sournia, managing director of Europ Continents
Thibaud Sournia, managing director of Europ Continents.

Europ Continents’ long involvement with the healthcare industry in Cambodia

Europ Continents has 20 years of experience in Cambodia. It opened its office in 1992, and this major company has been involved in many business sectors, but focuses on healthcare and laboratories.

Since it started in Cambodia the business environment of competency and autonomy are a critical component to the satisfaction of its customers, partners and collaborators.

According to Managing Director Thibaud Sournia, the increase in the healthcare and laboratories sectors has been substantial – today they have 60 professionals in three offices made up of doctors, biochemists, pharmacists, biomedical engineers, technicians and logisticians. This has created a lot of expertise among local people in these respective fields.

“Here every one of our team works hard and are spread across the country,” Thibaud said. “They have been continuously trained by our principals and have been consistently upgrading their know-how and skills on our installation and maintenance sites to insure a minimum response time.”

Thibaud added that this is not only Europ Continents: “Our partners we represent in the country are leaders in the market, do have the capability and the will to support this country.

“As an example, Philips Healthcare that we have been representing in the country for over 10 years, having installed the only two super-conducting MRI (3T) in Cambodia. We do have in Singapore a regional hub for spare parts to ensure fast deliveries and equipment on a minimum standby.

“As well, they set up long ago their Singapore Learning Center: all their equipment is displayed and running to organise end user application trainings as well as biomedical engineering training.

“Most of our partners are from Europe (Germany) and the US, with some potential companies in the region.

“Europ Continents Cambodia offers support and takes benefit from a group of nine countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, The Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam) and has 14 offices in Southeast Asia, with the support of more than 350 professional collaborators,” Thibaud added.

“The group expertise with equipment and consumables as well as project development has extended today to seven main divisions, such as healthcare, laboratories, environment, gourmet, security, geosystems and the infrastructure and industries.”

With a history of two decades of Europ Continents in Cambodia, Thibaud has seen that consumer demand in the healthcare industry has grown rapidity.

“The market has been continuously evolving for the last 20 years. NGOs at first, then small private clinics with freshly graduated doctors from the Phnom Penh University of Medicine,” he said.

“Then if the public sector is still supported by international cooperation, there is a real improvement. First because the freshly graduated now have experience; some of them having followed specialties in Europe – often in France supported by cooperation, or in the region.”

“And recently returning Cambodians who have been studying and working in western countries like Canada, France, Germany and Australia, they come back to join the public sector such as Calmette Hospital, which offers them primary care and specialty platforms and/or opening their private clinics.

“For example Kantha Bopha, to use just one, we have been constantly improving and developing our knowledge and services to support their dedication to Cambodian children, endlessly focusing on providing international care standards.

“Although we may have few customers for advanced equipment, niche activities (specialties), they all share the same requirements; they care for quality and expect an added value.

“If we install some equipment for the first time in the country, we commit ourselves to providing turnkey solutions.

“I have to admit that when five years ago we were asked to install the first MRI 3T (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) in the country, Philips refused to accept the project. Not that it was not appropriate to the country, but that this very sensitive imaging system required prerequisites that did not exist at that time.

“With several partners such as architects, civil engineers, power specialists and movers, we developed specific solutions carried out by motivated and committed people and today the system is run every day by Cambodian doctors and supported by Cambodian engineers.

“Today we are proud to say we are market leaders in various segments: Imaging, Endoscopy, Infections control, Clinical Diagnostic, Cardio-Vascular and Open-Heart surgery, Neurosurgery, Oncology, etc,” Thibaud said.

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