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Chris Newmarker

April 3, 2015

3 Min Read
Philips Taps Another Top Medtech Talent

Robert Cascella was previously CEO of Hologic. He joins Philips as the Dutch multinational increasingly focuses on what it calls HealthTech.

Chris Newmarker

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Robert Cascella

Robert Cascella, who helped increase Hologic's annual revenue by nearly $1 billion during his four years as CEO, is joining Royal Philips to lead its multi-billion dollar cluster of imaging businesses, the Netherlands-based multinational recently announced.

"Rob has an impressive track record in value creation in the healthcare industry, with a strong focus on integrated solutions," Philips CEO Frans van Houten said in a news release. "He will bring a wealth of expertise in diagnostic imaging, together with deep customer insights at a crucial time for Philips, as we accelerate our transformation to become a global leader in HealthTech and shape the future of the industry." 

Cascella joins Philips only weeks after the company announced that it was appointing Allergan CEO David E.I. Pyott to its supervisory board.

Pyott also knows something about increasing medtech sales by billions: He's turned Allergan from a small eye-care company with $1 billion in yearly sales to a diversified healthcare company that brings in $5 billion annually. (He'll be out of a job after the company merges with Actavis in a transaction worth $66 billion.)

Philips is brining on top medtech talent such as Cascella and Pyott at the same time that it is increasingly focusing and investing in what it calls the HealthTech part of its business.

Philips announced at the end of March that a consortium led by GO Scale Capital will acquire an 80.1% interest in Philips' combined LED components and automotive lighting business, which will operate under the name Lumileds post transaction. The deal will provide Philips with $2.8 billion in cash before tax and transaction related costs.

Next up for Philips is its previously announced plans to split into two companies focused on HealthTech and Lighting Solutions. Philips says it currently intends to spin off its Lighting Solutions business in an initial public offering, though other options will be reviewed.

The company said last September that its new HealthTech focus will "capitalize on the convergence of professional health care and consumer end-markets across the health continuum, from healthy living and prevention to diagnosis, treatment, recovery and home care."

Philips is seeking to turn around lackluster healthcare performance that may have played a role in Philips Healthcare CEO Deborah DiSanzo leaving the company last year

Philips' healthcare lineup includes consumer-facing medical devices such as toothbrushes and baby monitors as well as dedicated medical devices for use in hospitals.

In the case of Cascella, he succeeds Gene Saragnese, who has decided to retire from Philips at the end of the month. Cascella has more than 30 years of healthcare industry experience, including 10 years at women's health company Hologic.  His final four years at Hologic were as CEO, where he helped the company evolve into a full-scale provider of medical devices, diagnostics, and surgical interventions.

Cascella says Philips' "tremendous history of innovation, its leading position in medical imaging and its customer-centric focus on the HealthTech opportunity will make it both an exciting and rewarding place to work."

Refresh your medical device industry knowledge at BIOMEDevice Boston, May 6-7, 2015.

Chris Newmarker is senior editor of Qmed and MPMN. Follow him on Twitter at @newmarker.

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