GE Medical Systems has acquired Applicare Medical Imaging, a Dutch privately-held leader in the $1.2 billion global market for systems for the archiving and transmitting of electronic medical images and information. Analysts estimate that the market for these systems is growing at about 20% per year. Financial terms of the transaction were not released.
Information technology is a major catalyst in driving lower health care costs around the world, according to Jeffrey R. Immelt, President and CEO of GE Medical Systems, who stresses that GE is committed to leading this effort. As such, the addition of Applicare Medical Imaging significantly accelerates GE's ability to better serve doctors and their patients with cost-effective productivity tools to increase the speed of health care delivery, as well as enable remote diagnosis via the Internet, and also eliminate quality problems which can result from lost or damaged paper and film files in the hospital.
Based in Zeist, The Netherlands, Applicare designs and produces a range of PC/NT-based systems for picture archiving (PACS) and tele-radiology. PACS allow medical providers to electronically archive, display, as well as transmit images created by ultrasound, magnetic resonance, computed tomography, x-ray, and other imaging devices throughout a large networked health care system.
"Health care customers will be delighted with the broad portfolio that this acquisition will create", claims Vishal Wanchoo, General Manager of Integrated Imaging Solutions for GE Medical. As a result, as stated by Mr. Wanchoo, every hospital in the world, even those in small towns, rural areas, or developing countries, will have a GE PACS and tele-radiology option which can be customized and economically upgraded to meet their specific needs.
Applicare is the undisputed leader in PC-based software for PACS products, and this technical expertise has been a major advantage in accelerating the transition to Internet applications, according to Applicare Medical Imaging founder and Managing Director Ruud Kroon. It is clear that the company's product portfolio and development plans completely mesh with GE's, Mr. Kroon believes, as he looks forward to become a part of this new and rapidly growing team.
Applicare is known around the world for its great people and technology, and the GE people are happy to welcome this medical software imaging expert to the team. In addition, Applicare's RadWorks NT product line is a world class PACS and tele-radiology system that complements GE's existing PathSpeed system. Applicare's installed base includes more than 3.000 systems in 30 countries.
As part of the transaction, GE Medical will continue an Applicare contract to supply state-of-the-art components to IBM, as was included in a major PACS project with the U.S. government. Applicare will also further supply PACS components through its existing Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) channels. The company's role in the provision of standard leading edge PACS components to other PACS suppliers will indeed advance the state of the overall industry, according to Mr. Wanchoo.
Applicare was founded in 1987. Its existing management team will join GE, and its headquarters operation will remain in Zeist, The Netherlands. GE Medical Systems is a global leader in medical diagnostic equipment and services, including conventional and digital x-ray, computer tomography (CT), magnetic resonance (MR), ultrasound, patient monitoring systems, positron emission tomography (PET), nuclear medicine and health care information management.
For more than 100 years, health care providers have relied on GE Medical Systems to offer high-quality imaging technology, services and productivity solutions. GE Medical Systems, with its global headquarters in Waukesha, Wisconsin, is a $6 billion business with nearly 20.000 employees worldwide. You can find more information on Applicare's RadWorks NT software in the VMW January 1999 article Applicare's RadWorks 4.0 medical imaging software to benefit from Pegasus wavelet compression technology.