Life Sciences Insight

Fresenius Medical Care taps former Philips exec to take the reins after CEO’s retirement

The year is still young, but Fresenius Medical Care, for one, is already looking ahead to 2023.

As the world rings in the new year, the dialysis giant will be welcoming in a big change of its own. Effective Jan. 1, Carla Kriwet, Ph.D., will take on the role of CEO.

Kriwet will replace Rice Powell, who has been with the company almost its entire 26-year life span. He joined in 1997 as president of the renal product technologies division within its North American branch then spent the ensuing years working his way up the corporate ladder.

That culminated in his January 2013 appointment to the chief executive post. The 66-year-old will retire after exactly 10 years in the role, as required by Fresenius’ age limit for members of its management board.

“After 25 years with this company, and a full decade as CEO, I look back with a lot of gratitude and pride at what we achieved during this time. Our products and services are more important than ever to our patients and a fundamental part of their lives. As the world’s only provider of the full range of innovative therapies and products for people with renal diseases, we have outstanding prerequisites for our continued success,” Powell said in a statement.

Kriwet will be stepping into Powell’s place fresh off a two-year stint leading Munich-based BSH Home Appliances Group, Europe’s largest manufacturer of home appliances.

Prior to that, she spent a little over seven years at Philips. She began her career there as CEO of its overall business in Germany, Austria and Switzerland before shifting focus to the company’s healthcare segment. Kriwet spent two years leading Philips’ monitoring, analytics and therapeutic care businesses before stepping up as CEO of its connected care division, a post she held for three and a half years.

“I fully identify with the vision of making the lives of the patients who have put their trust in us a little more worth living every day. And I’m convinced that bringing ever better medicine to ever more people goes hand in hand with economic success,” she said.

Alongside Kriwet’s appointment, Fresenius has also signed a new five-year contract with Helen Giza, currently its chief financial and technology officer. Under the terms of her new contract, Giza will add deputy CEO to those titles, offering support to Kriwet throughout the CEO transition.

Kriwet will take the reins after a year that’s projected to bring in modest growth for Fresenius. With the release of its first-quarter earnings sheet this week, the company confirmed its previous projections of low- to mid-single digit growth in revenue and net income for 2022 compared to 2021’s full-year take of 17.6 billion euros, or about $18.6 billion.

In the first quarter alone, Fresenius raked in more than 4.5 billion euros ($4.7 billion), a year-over-year increase of 8%. Its net income wasn’t as successful, however, with a 37% drop from the same period in 2021 that brought the quarter’s total down to 157 million euros, or about $165 million.

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