Mike Marinaro, who became president of Medtronic’s Surgical Robotics operating unit one year ago, is now EVP and president of Medtronic’s Surgical operating unit.
Fridley, Minnesota-based Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) didn’t announce the changes in a press release or a regulatory filing.
Instead, the medtech manufacturer quietly updated its website to reflect Marinaro’s new title and the “newly created” operating unit, “bringing together a legacy of surgical devices and the new robotic-assisted surgery technology to redefine the future of surgery.”
Marinaro’s LinkedIn profile says he started his new role in January. Efforts to reach him for more information were unsuccessful.
It’s not clear exactly when Medtronic updated the website, which said Marinaro was “recently appointed” to lead the new operating unit. The webpage with his new title says it was updated in February, while Medtronic’s leadership page says it was updated this month.
In a statement to MassDevice, Medtronic confirmed the consolidation and said it would keep its surgical robotics operations in Colorado and Connecticut open.
Medtronic restructured its business into 20 operating units (OUs) effective 2021, including Robotic Surgery and Surgical Innovations. Those two OUs made up the Surgical Innovations Division in the Medical Surgical portfolio led by EVP Bob White, who’s still listed on Medtronic’s leadership page.
Former Medtronic SVP and Surgical Innovations OU President Matt Perry left the role in November, according to his LinkedIn page.
The Surgical Innovations OU was Medtronic’s largest OU when the company reorganized. Meanwhile, the Robotic Surgery OU struggled with supply chain and manufacturing issues on its Hugo robotic-assisted surgery system.Megan Rosengarten, who had led the business for four years. Medtronic said Rosengarten was taking a six-month sabbatical; she’s currently serving on the boards of Neuronetics and Early Bird Medical, according to her LinkedIn page.
Significant expense reductions and tough robotic surgery competition
Medtronic is combining the two units at the same time as it makes “significant expense reductions” before the end of its fiscal year in April. It is unclear whether Medtronic cut jobs in the consolidation.
In general, Medtronic has said little about potential job cuts among its ranks, which it reported as more than 95,000 people worldwide at the end of the company’s last fiscal year.
Meanwhile, it offered early retirement incentives in recent weeks as another cost-cutting strategy. Soliciting voluntary departures through early retirements is a way companies can avoid layoffs, or reduce severance, unemployment and legal costs if layoffs do follow.
Medtronic is among a host of companies — big and small — trying to challenge Intuitive Surgical in the soft-tissue surgical robotics space. (Here are 16 you need to know. And here are another eight.) Intuitive’s robotic system, though, has a head-start with healthcare providers in the U.S. market. Plus, health systems in the U.S. and elsewhere appear to be more hesitant to make big-ticket capital purchases like robots as they grapple with staffing shortages and other operational challenges.
The second-largest medical device company in the world — Johnson & Johnson MedTech — recently cut nearly 350 surgical robotics jobs. Overall, MassDevice has reported on more than 19,000 medtech workers let go across the industry since mid-2022.
Executive Editor Chris Newmarker contributed to this report.