Know Labs founder Ron Erickson named CEO of noninvasive glucose monitor maker

The third time’s the charm: Two decades after founding Know Labs—then known as Visualant—Ron Erickson is once again stepping into the role of chief executive.

The Seattle-based company announced Erickson’s promotion on Thursday, when it took effect immediately. He’ll also retain his previous position as chairman of Know Labs’ board of directors.

Erickson is replacing Phil Bosua, who had served as CEO of the tech developer for nearly five years, starting in early 2018. And this isn’t Erickson’s first rodeo. A few months after founding Know Labs in March 2003, he was appointed CEO for less than a year between 2003 and 2004. He took on the top job once again at the end of 2009 and stayed there for the better part of a decade, until Bosua was tapped to replace him in 2018.

Though Bosua stepped down as both the chief executive and a member of Know Labs’ board, he’ll stick around as a technology advisor and consultant to the company, according to this week’s announcement.

He will also be given “certain assets” of Know Labs’ subsidiary AI Mind to lead further development of its work. The startup launched at the end of 2021 to build out artificial intelligence technologies that’ll help power Know Labs’ noninvasive sensor technology, dubbed Bio-RFID, which sends radio waves through the skin to measure glucose levels.

“Thanks to Phil’s genius for invention, Know Labs’ intellectual property portfolio is second to none in the emerging field of noninvasive medical diagnostics,” Erickson said. “By evolving into a technology advisory and consulting role, Phil will have the freedom and flexibility to pursue his passion for new discoveries in science, software and artificial intelligence, while participating in the value our team continues to create for shareholders.”

Erickson said in the company release that his focus as CEO will be on leading Know Labs through continued product development and, ultimately, the FDA clearance process. Those efforts will “accelerate” this year, he said, thanks to investor support and additional staffing changes.

Indeed, on Friday, less than a year after its last C-suite makeover—and mere hours after publicizing the CEO switch-up—Know Labs announced another handful of executive changes. Masanori King Takee, who has been at Know Labs since 2018, was named chief technology officer. In that role, he’ll focus on refining the Bio-RFID algorithm and other data science needs to help steer Know Labs’ technology toward clinical trials and FDA review.

Leo Trautwein, meanwhile, was tapped for the role of chief commercial officer, in a transition from his previous title of chief marketing officer. He’s been replaced as marketing chief by Jessica English, previously the VP of brand at health-tracking ring maker Oura.

“I’m excited for 2023. These changes to our leadership team will allow us to accelerate our progress and collaborate more while eliminating silos,” Erickson said. “Our most important goal for the year is to have our technology externally validated. We will achieve this through a heavy focus on data science and algorithm refinement, clinical development and trials, and partnerships with leading medical research institutions for additional data collection and accuracy validation.”