CEO: Josef Kaeser
Based: Munich, Germany
2014 sales: $16.9 billion
2013 sales: $16.6 billion
Change: 2%

Siemens has pulled out its healthcare business into a separately managed unit since Oct. 1. It's slated to become an entirely separate company by May 1, although there's reportedly not an IPO planned for the new entity.

The industrial conglomerate is having a tough time staying nimble with the fast-moving healthcare industry. It's betting that these assets can be better managed separately. The business has four units: imaging and therapy systems, clinical products, diagnostics and customer solutions. It already sold off its hospital information system business to Cerner last year. Also, Siemens sold its hearing aid business Audiology Solutions in January to investors EQT and the Strüngmann family.

Troubled Siemens announced earlier this year that it would lay off almost 8,000 employees--that's on top of another 15,000 layoffs it disclosed in 2013.

Siemens isn't expected to retain 100% ownership of the new healthcare company, despite the fact that it also is not slated for an IPO. There's some speculation that the conglomerate will sell off some of its interest in the healthcare company as a means to make acquisitions.

The healthcare group had a profit margin of 14.5% last quarter, so it throws off huge amounts of cash--around €2 billion ($2.2 billion) in each of the last two fiscal years. But its profitability is shrinking; last quarter it fell from 17.1% during the same quarter a year prior.

Healthcare orders increased 3% and revenue increased 2% last fiscal year.

"There's some slowdown there on the imaging environment, diagnostics is still being very decent," summed up Siemens chairman, president and CEO Josef Kaeser on the most recent earnings call.

Despite the upheaval, Siemens keeps churning out new products, particularly in imaging and diagnostics. For example, late last year it launched a cloud-based network for medical imaging dubbed "Teamplay."

"Siemens Healthcare products are used to diagnose or treat about 200,000 patients around the world every hour," Arthur Kaindl, CEO of the SYNGO Business Unit at Siemens Healthcare, said in a statement at the time. "In the process, our customers generate a vast amount of data, but they currently can use only a fraction of the information."

-- Stacy Lawrence (email | Twitter)

For more:
Siemens healthcare biz spinoff slated for May
Siemens to lay off 7,800; says healthcare unit 'needs to step up its efforts'
Siemens preps for healthcare spinoff with exec shuffle, but profits slide
Siemens will complete separating out its healthcare biz in 2015, but no IPO
Siemens and Cerner team to develop new med tech as part of $1.3B deal