Abhijit Barooah: The Entrepreneur Who Turned Back to His Roots

Abhijit Barooah receives Dainik Purvoday Excellence Award 2007 Img Source: Assamtimes
Abhijit Barooah receives Dainik Purvoday Excellence Award 2007
Img Source: Assamtimes

Born in Assam, Abhijit Barooah is the son and grandson of civil servants. He graduated from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi and got a graduate degree from an University in the US. Like many of others like him, he could easily have taken up a lucrative job in any of the major cities in India or abroad. But Barooah had other plans.

Abhijit Barooah’s Childhood

Even as a small boy, he wanted to be his own boss and knew that he did not want to work under anybody. In the mid 1980’s, he was back from the US and the entrepreneur in him was looking for a business idea. And he wanted to do something in Assam itself. The fact that setting up a business in a strife-torn state would be difficult did not deter him.

A brief Overview of Abhijit Barooah’s Success Story

By then Assam’s oil fields were running dry. The chemical engineer in Barooah knew that injecting liquid nitrogen into such fields could increase crude oil production. But liquid nitrogen was not available in Assam. Around the same time, the industrial gases sector in India was deregulated and here was a business opportunity Barooah latched on. He set up plant in Sivasagar, 20 km from Oil and Natural Gas Corporations Eastern Headquarters, and signed a contract to supply liquid nitrogen to this public sector company. Today his company Assam Air Products and Premier Cyrogenics supply liquid nitrogen, high-altitude oxygen and other industrial gases to different industries starting from oil to healthcare with factories in Sivasagar, North Lakhimpur and Guwahati.

Apart from managing his businesses, Barooah, who is in his 50s and the father of three, wears several hats. He serves as the non executive chairman of Assam Financial Corporation. He is a also a member of Cll National Committee on SME, Pollution Control Board (Assam), Assam Institute of Management, Standing Committee on Employment Generation, Centre for Management Studies, Study Committee on State Public Sector Enterprises and Director of Assam Industrial Development Corporation. He has specialization in various areas such as chemical, management, advisory services and serves on the board of several companies. Barooah has also forayed into other businesses- he has bought a franchise of VLCC Institute of Beauty, Health and Management, and NIS Sparta, the education and training institute of the Reliance- Anil Dhirubhai Ambai group. He understands the importance of training and education in shaping the future of the youth in the state.

What sets apart Barooah is the enterpreneural spirit, his propensity to look for opportunities in challenges. It takes a lot of guts to set up a business in an area associated with political unrest and high levels of unemployment and make it run successfully, but Barooah has done just that. And in doing so, he has tackled the problem of employment head on. He believes in hiring locally and almost all of his employees are from Assam.

Barooah has set an example that other fellow entrepreneurs are likely to follow. It is people like him and their achievements which can inspire the youth of Assam to follow their dream and turn adversity to their advantage.

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