Philips shipping healthcare products from India

After establishing Pune as the global headquarters for its mobile surgery division, Dutch technology company Royal Philips is exporting the products it developed here to the Western markets.  “India is a very important growth market for us, as well as an important R&D and manufacturing location,” Bert van Meurs, general manager for image guided therapy (IGT) at Philips, told ET. “We currently have five products that have been designed, developed and manufactured here, and all of these are exported globally.”

Van Meurs was in Pune to launch Intuis, a mid-tier catheterisation lab (cathlab) product developed by Philips’ Pune Healthcare Innovation Center. That India is the global headquarters for its mobile surgery business — a first for any global healthcare products major — is a clear indication of the importance of the country for Philips.
Traditionally, Philips has been present in the premium products space but with the Pune innovation center, the focus is now shifting towards mid-tier segments. “Earlier the company was focused on growth geographies, but we now see demand for value-based healthcare growing in Western markets. With these products, we are already serving markets like France and North America,” said van Meurs.  Another reason to set up the global headquarters for the unit here was the way the market is moving.  “We want to touch three billion lives by 2025, and India will be a big part of it,” said Rekha Ranganathan, general manager for the mobile surgery business under IGT. In an earlier interview, she had said that Philips’ India business was pegged at about $1 billion (Rs 6,727 crore), with health-tech comprising about half of that.

Over the past few years, the Pune Healthcare Innovation Center has started developing products that cater to the domestic and international markets. Ranganathan said: “We’ve exported 1,000 systems from India to almost 90 countries.” These include emerging markets in Africa, but also mature markets like the US and Western Europe. Of the five products that the centre has launched so far, almost all have been launched globally in a staggered manner, including the BV Vectra, a mobile surgical C-arm, and mobile Opta, a mobile xray unit.

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