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Applying the GE Mantra to Medical Systems

Executive Summary

To keep pace with market changes and the slow growth in many of its core businesses, GE Medical Systems (GEMS) has been expanding its role as a maker of diagnostic modalities and monitoring equipment to include clinical systems and productivity solutions for its customers. In keeping with GE's overall business philosophy, emphasizing information technology, GEMS is using the Internet to improve productivity for itself and its customers. By establishing itself as the best-in-class provider of products and services, GEMS expects to take market share from its competitors. But as GEMS moves into new hospital departments and up the hospital hierarchy to the CIO and CEO, it must not lose touch with what got it where it is--selling radiology, and more recently, cardiology, systems. The extent that GEMS can effectively grow its business using that model is unclear. Such systems and services may be limited to being an adjunct to the core business of selling imaging equipment, not the cornerstone for growth of a billion-dollar, information-propelled business.

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The Pace of Development of Molecular Imaging Agents

The adoption of new in vivo molecular imaging agents may eventually follow the current path of in vitro diagnostics, which for some products is shifting from a cost-effectiveness standard for reimbursement toward an evidence-based. But the companies most likely to support the clinical trials that would establish such benefits are only slowly integrating the development of molecular agents into their core businesses. IVD - an area of acquisition interest for these companies -may be the force that transforms them into more biologically minded and innovation-driven entities, and in so doing it may bolster the development of molecular imaging agents.

The Pace of Development of Molecular Imaging Agents

The adoption of new in vivo molecular imaging agents may eventually follow the current path of in vitro diagnostics, which for some products is shifting from a cost-effectiveness standard for reimbursement toward an evidence-based. But the companies most likely to support the clinical trials that would establish such benefits are only slowly integrating the development of molecular agents into their core businesses. IVD - an area of acquisition interest for these companies -may be the force that transforms them into more biologically minded and innovation-driven entities, and in so doing it may bolster the development of molecular imaging agents.

Siemens--Stealing GE's Thunder

Siemens AG continues to assemble the pieces necessary to create a one-stop-shop for medical testing. With its $7 billion take-out of Dade Behring Holdings Inc., the German industrial giant ups the acquisition ante for in vitro diagnostic companies. Rival GE may have to play catch-up if it wants to maintain its leadership position in medical testing.

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