Health and Life Sciences
When Clint Severson became CEO of Abaxis Inc. in 1996, the company’s future was in doubt.
Abaxis, which markets blood analyzers to physicians for use in their offices, was losing money and barely had enough cash to stay afloat. Its machines lacked the ability to perform some crucial tests, it faced federal regulations that would require physicians to go through a lengthy licensing process before using its product, and in the veterinary market, a much larger competitor controlled 90 percent of the market.
Severson, who also serves as the company’s chairman and president, dug in to turn Abaxis around. He hired a new manufacturing director to find a way to lower the cost of the blood sample container from $22 to $4, increased manufacturing efficiency and hired a sales team to cultivate a small group of enthusiastic customers. And he tied every employee’s compensation to the company’s goals, increasing compensation as those goals were met.
Today, the blood analyzers can be used to perform 96 percent of the chemistry tests ordered in the U.S., and doctors don’t have to obtain a license from the FDA after Abaxis proved that someone with no prior experience could achieve reliable results. And unlike the way traditional blood samples have been analyzed, Abaxis’ technology allows for accurate and comprehensive analysis in less than 15 minutes.
As a result of the company’s revolutionary technology, it has increased its veterinary market share, and its sales have increased at a 36 percent compounded annual growth rate since 1996.
Even with all of his success, Severson has no intention of slowing down. Over the next few years, he plans to continue to broaden the analyzers’ testing ability, and his goal is to double Abaxis’ earnings and increase the company’s share of the total blood chemistry market to 10 percent.
How to reach: Abaxis Inc., (510) 675-6500 or www.abaxis.com