GE Healthcare is jointly investing $130 million with Pennsylvania based Cancer Treatment Services International (CTSI) to set up a chain of 25 cancer detection and treatment centers across India. GE will provide equipment while CTSI, which set up the 250-bed American Oncology Institute in Hyderabad in 2012, will take care of treatment, doctors, medical personnel and related services.
GE Healthcare will be the minority investor, its Chairman and CEO John Dineen told a joint news conference. According to Dineen, the partnership was a part of its $1-billion commitment to R&D related to diagnosing cancer. GE is also developing low-cost diagnostic technologies ‘in India and for India’ for various diseases, 100 of them targeting cancer alone. It recently launched a low-cost version of PET-CT that is widely used to find cancerous tumors.
Terri Bresenham, Bangalore-based President and CEO of GE Healthcare South Asia, said cancer cases, now at three million, were rising sharply in India, and a large number of its victims were dying due to late detection and high cost of treatment. Also, 1.23 million new cases were showing up each year. CTSI President and CEO Joe Nicholas said the partners planned to start the first few centers in Andhra Pradesh as a hub-and-spoke model, and later try it out in other countries that have similar conditions. The $10-million Hyderabad location has already treated 10,000 people.
What this means
Setting up long-term win-win models may be a good way to enter and expand. India also serves as a crucible to prove out models that can apply in the developing nations of Africa, South America and Asia.