Kirit Patel MBE chief executive officer of Day Lewis Group plc talked leading figures from pharmacy and the business world through his company’s startling growth at HSBC Bank’s headquarters in Canary Wharf.

His talk billed as a ‘special entrepreneurs’ leadership evening’ detailed how he built the company up from scratch from buying his first pharmacy in Southborough in Kent in 1975 to presiding over a family-owned business pharmacy chain with over 160 branches the largest independent group of pharmacies in the UK.

Patel talked about the importance of keeping a close eye on the finances as key to any successful business and respecting his staff highlighting the balance he has struck between maintaining the two cultures within his company; the “corporate” and “family.”

I respect loyalty. We have two cultures the corporate boys and the family guys I brought with me. We have the family office and we have the corporate office and managing the two teams on my board is tough but it needs the old boys and it needs the new boys” he said.

People are important. Everybody’s important. They might get paid differently but they’re all important to me. If they are disloyal – or if you are disloyal to them more to the point – it doesn’t work.”