UPDATED May 4, 2016, with confirmation from Medtronic.
The Fridley, Minn.-based medical device leviathan said it tapped Karen Parkhill, Comerica’s CFO, to replace Ellis, as initially reported this morning by the Wall Street Journal. Medtronic said Ellis is slated to step down as CFO June 20 after a 27-year run with the company, but will retain oversight of the company’s global operations, IT and facilities & real estate doings. Ellis, who served as CFO for 11 years, is also slated to keep his seat on Medtronic’s executive committee.
Ellis was a key figure in the largest medical device acquisition ever, Medtronic’s $50 billion buyout of Covidien in January 2015. The company said its market capitalization doubled to more than $110 billion during his tenure.
“Although Gary will continue in a critical leadership role at Medtronic, I cannot thank Gary enough for the leadership he provided Medtronic over the past 11 years as CFO,” chairman & CEO Omar Ishrak said in prepared remarks. “Gary has helped lead Medtronic to tremendous growth and global expansion over his tenure, which has translated into extremely meaningful returns for our shareholders. We are grateful that he will remain with us to help us achieve key integration objectives of the Covidien acquisition and transition Karen into the CFO role.”
Medtronic said it ran an external search for a new CFO, aiming for a seamless transition. Dallas-based Comerica said yesterday that Parkhill, whose resume includes a stint as CFO of J.P. Morgan Chase’s investment banking arm, resigned to pursue the proverbial “other opportunities.”
“I am delighted to add someone with Karen’s deep expertise and insights to the Medtronic leadership team,” Ishrak said. “Given Karen’s extensive background across all of the major disciplines within finance, and her direct experience as an investment banker, CFO at JP Morgan’s commercial banking business, and CFO at Comerica, I am confident in her ability to lead our global finance organization and believe she will be a strong representative to our investors and Wall Street. I look forward to the ideas and perspectives she will bring to our leadership team – including from her experience as a director with the Methodist Health System – during this transformational time at Medtronic and in the healthcare industry.”
“I am extremely pleased to join Medtronic as CFO, a company with such a longstanding history and Mission of serving people with chronic disease around the world,” Parkhill added. “It is a true honor to join a company that is successfully delivering on this vital mission, while also providing strong returns for its shareholders.”