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India Born, Oklahoma Grown

Sam John’s education led him to Oklahoma. Access to jobs and opportunities for growth within the company he founded kept him here.

Sam John, Innovative Products founder and owner, arrived from India in 1985 to get his masters in mechanical engineering from the University of Oklahoma. His plans were to then return home.

Close to 40 years later, he’s still here. 

“Immediately, I found out a degree in Electronics and Computer Technology will make it easy to find a job in Oklahoma,” he said. 

He worked for a biomedical equipment design and manufacturing company, AKZO-NOBEL, and he said he realized how vital medical equipment is to the advancement of the healthcare industry.

“That was my first experience of seeing how important is the dialysis treatment,” he said. “A complete floor was dedicated for dialysis and the patients were waiting in the lobby for the treatment. It was an eye opener for me to know that how many people living their life with every other day four-hour dialysis treatment.”

He finished his MS degree and later earned an MBA as well. While at AKZO-NOBEL, he helped design and manufacture different types of biomedical diagnostics and dialysis equipment.

“The dialysis machines we used to manufacture was … designed with the technology licensed from NASA to recirculate water in spacecrafts,” he said. “Because of the portability and convenience of the dialysis machine, it was commonly used in ICUs, movable hospital ships, makeshift hospitals in war zones or disaster hit areas, etc.”

Then, about 22 years ago, John started his own “dream” engineering company, Innovative Products Inc., providing clients with prototypes, low-volume parts and assembly and testing.

“IPI’s first product was a bio-mixer for mixing bio-chemicals mechanically with two syringes assembled at 90 degrees,” he said. “This device is very useful for the bio-research field. I always wanted to have full control on the products we designed from a concept or an idea to a finished marketable product.”

He’s been growing ever since, acquiring other similar companies and expanding his manufacturing facility into larger spaces. And, he has also diversified the company into other industries outside of biomedical like expanding into oil field implementation needs and creating a home-building business. He’s also worked with major clients including GE/Baker Hughes, AVARA Pharmaceutical Services, Medtronic, Smith and Nephew, Autocraft and Tinker Air Force Base.

“My goal with IPI is to introduce more products and grow in the field of manufacturing and become the top Asian-owned product manufacturing business in Oklahoma in five years,” he said.

All because he stayed in Oklahoma.

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