Start-up builds PET/CT centers

July 9, 2003

A new company, Morningstar Molecular Imaging, is hatching plans to launch a chain of PET/CT imaging centers across the U.S. The Sarasota, FL, firm will open its first centers in Georgia, Colorado, and Florida later this year. It plans to expand to other

A new company, Morningstar Molecular Imaging, is hatching plans to launch a chain of PET/CT imaging centers across the U.S. The Sarasota, FL, firm will open its first centers in Georgia, Colorado, and Florida later this year. It plans to expand to other states over the next 12 months. The centers will conduct business under the Morningstar Molecular Imaging name and will be jointly owned by Morningstar, local investors, and physicians where appropriate. The business model is based on three strategies: to cluster multiple imaging centers in metropolitan areas so as to establish economies of scale and local branding; provide only PET/CT through the highest performance, LSO-based scanning systems; and tie all its centers together with an IT system that supports referring physician and patient services. Key to the success of this model is a "speed-to-market" approach to ensure that the fledgling company provides service to patients in as many metro areas as soon as possible, according to Ken Manning, vice president of marketing for Morningstar.