Philips cuts positions in ultrasound cleanup

April 8, 1992

Philips Medical Systems North America took steps last month tocut costs and reduce redundant positions at its Philips Ultrasoundunit. The Dutch medical imaging vendor is careful to picture thesecuts as tactical and not as a reflection of reduced focus on

Philips Medical Systems North America took steps last month tocut costs and reduce redundant positions at its Philips Ultrasoundunit. The Dutch medical imaging vendor is careful to picture thesecuts as tactical and not as a reflection of reduced focus on theultrasound business.

About 50 employees were let go at the Santa Ana, CA, headquartersof Philips Ultrasound. While the impact of the cuts was acrossthe board, including some in engineering and manufacturing, manyaffected positions were in areas such as personnel and finance,which were already being handled at PMSNA headquarters in Shelton,CT, said Janet Collins, director of corporate communications forPMSNA.

The move follows a restructuring of internal reporting relationshipsat Philips that occurred at the start of this year. Philips Ultrasound,which has worldwide business responsibilities for the vendor'sultrasound line, now reports to PMSNA in Shelton rather than directlyto PMS world headquarters in Best, the Netherlands (SCAN 2/26/92).

Michael P. Moakley, president and CEO of Philips Medical SystemsNorth America, took the reins of Philips Ultrasound followingthe departure of general manager Thomas E. Bird in February. Moakleywill manage the unit directly until a replacement for Bird isfound.

The personnel cuts at Santa Ana reflect immediate housekeepingneeds, rather than a switch in long-term strategic positioningon the part of PMS, Collins said.

"He (Moakley) has taken a close look at the operationand is finding ways to streamline it and make it more efficient,"she told SCAN.

Staff at Santa Ana was due to increase under an ambitiousplan to boost investment in the ultrasound business announcedby PMS last year (SCAN 6/19/91). The March cuts do not reflectdiminished support for this strategic objective, Collins said.

"Over the long term, the focus is on growth for ultrasound.We see that as our primary growth market," Collins said.