Medtronic CEO Ishrak to retire in 2020, restorative therapies head Martha to take over

Medtronic HQ
Geoff Martha will take over as CEO April 27, 2020, while Omar Ishrak will become Medtronic’s first executive chairman, to help guide the transition. (Medtronic)

Medtronic CEO Omar Ishrak plans to retire from the post in April 2020 at the end of the medtech giant’s current fiscal year. 

The move kicks off a lengthy succession process, according to the company, that will see Restorative Therapies Group Executive Vice President Geoff Martha ultimately elevated to the top spot. 

Before that, starting Nov. 1, Martha will join the board of directors and take on the newly created role of president to oversee Medtronic’s various operating groups and regions. Martha will take over as CEO April 27, 2020, while Ishrak will become Medtronic’s first executive chairman to help guide the transition.

“This plan and its timing enable Geoff and I to partner on achieving Medtronic’s key financial performance goals as well as delivering on our critical pipeline milestones, including several important product launches,” Ishrak said in a company statement

At 63 years old, Ishrak is approaching Medtronic’s mandatory retirement age of 65 for executive officers. He was named chairman and CEO in 2011 after joining from GE Healthcare. Since then, he has presided over a doubling of the company’s annual revenue.

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Medtronic's Geoff Martha (Twitter)

Martha also jumped to Medtronic from GE in 2011, eventually overseeing the company’s spine, brain, pain and specialty therapies divisions, which cover products from orthopedic implants to drug infusion systems to surgical robotics.  

In its 2019 fiscal year, the Restorative Therapies Group brought in a record $8.183 billion in revenue, an increase of 5.7%, driven in part by growth in its neurovascular and neurosurgery arms. Martha also helped lead Medtronic’s $43 billion buyout of surgical hardware maker Covidien in 2014 as chief integration officer. 

He will be succeeded by SVP Brett Wall, currently president of Medtronic’s brain therapies division, effective Nov. 1. Wall joined the company in 2015 through the Covidien acquisition and has helped drive the aforementioned growth in the company’s stroke and brain offerings.

“It’s my absolute privilege to lead this group, which has an incredibly strong leadership team and more than 14,000 dedicated and passionate team members around the world,” Wall said, describing restorative therapies as the forefront of the company’s innovation agenda.