Siemens Healthineers - Our company history

Siemens Healthineers can trace its earliest beginnings back to the companies Siemens & Halske, Reiniger, Gebbert & Schall, and Veifa-Werke. At the beginning of the 20th century, after expanding from small workshops to become major enterprises, these three competitors embarked on a race to develop more advanced technology for the benefit of patients.

Siemens Healthineers MedMuseum-Company Founders

Siemens & Halske

Reiniger, Gebbert & Schall


    On November 8, 1895, Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen discovered X-rays and changed the world!

    Shortly after the discovery of X-rays, our engineers started to construct our company´s first X-ray tube for medical applications.

    <p>Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen</p>

    World War I was a decisive turning point for the companies Siemens & Halske, Reiniger, Gebbert & Schall, and Veifa-Werke. Markets collapsed, many of their staff were called to the front, and more and more capacity was given over to the production of military equipment.

    In the course of World War I, Veifa-Werke got into financial trouble and were taken over by RGS.

    Merger agreement between S&H and RGS

    Merger agreement between S&H and RGS

    1925 - Following a series of failed speculative investments and poor strategic decisions during the period of high inflation, RGS had amassed debts of some 6 million gold marks. So RGS needed a financially sound investor and offered the company to Siemens & Halske. On January 1, 1925, RGS was taken over by the Berlin-based company but initially maintained its status as an independent stock corporation.

    – The merger was also completed from a structural perspective with the founding of Siemens-Reiniger-Werke (SRW). The manufacturing was concentrated in Erlangen.

    The year 1933 was a fateful one for Siemens-Reiniger-Werke and for Germany and the world as a whole. The installation of the National Socialist dictatorship had a direct impact on the company. Armament and wartime economy had a growing impact on business activities. After the outbreak of the war, forced laborers from occupied regions replaced the SRW employees who had been conscripted.

    The turbulent postwar period presented Siemens-Reiniger-Werke with significant challenges – keeping production up and running, tackling social deprivation among its workforce, and rebuilding its international networks.

    Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother) visits the booth of the SRW at the ICR in London, 1950

    Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother) visits the booth of SRW at the ICR in London

    1950 - SRW presented itself on the world stage again for the first time at the 6th International Congress of Radiology (ICR) in London. The exhibition showcased new developments in X-ray technology and electromedicine.

    Scene from the movie "75 Jahre Elektromedizin in Erlangen", 1952 

    In the 1950s, SRW once again began welcoming visitors from around the world to Erlangen. On factory tours, customers received insights into the manufacturing process and familiarized themselves with the latest products.

    1964 – The SRW headquarters got a new look! For the next 50 years, the central administration of SRW was located in this impressive high-rise building with adjacent showroom.

    1966 - Rapid technological progress in the expanding global market called for regular restructuring measures. The founding of Siemens AG in 1966 brought together S&H, Siemens-Schuckertwerke, and SRW as a single legal entity. Within Siemens AG SRW was known as Wernerwerk für Medizinische Technik from then on. In 1969, this became the Medical Technology Division (UB Med).

    After the years of postwar reconstruction, the company intensified its global outlook. Production sites were added all around the world.

    Scene from the movie "Fortschritt für das Leben", 1987

    The first X-ray devices ”Made in India”. In 1959, the plant in Worli was opened, which was the predecessor of the modern production site in Bengaluru.

    Scene from the movie "Fortschritt für das Leben", 1987

    Starting in the middle of the 1970s, Siemens expanded its presence in the USA. The company set up its own plants and extended its product portfolio by acquiring American medical technology companies.

    In the 1980s, Siemens concentrated the development and production of nuclear medical devices in the USA. In 1989, the plant in Des Plaines, in the Chicago metropolitan area, was moved to Hoffman Estates.This plant continues to play a crucial role for Siemens Healthineers' Molecular Imaging business until today.

    With three big factories and one of our four global innovation centers, China is one of Siemens Healthineers´ most important production and development sites today.

    Siemens plant in Shanghai, 2007

    1992 - In Shanghai Siemens founded the first Chinese production site for Siemens medical technology. Today, they produce CT scanners, ultrasound systems, X-ray devices and medical components. 

    Siemens Healthineers plant Shenzhen,2020

    2002 – After several years of collacoration, the high-tech location Siemens Shenzhen Magnetic Resonance Ltd. (SSMR) was founded, where MRI systems are still developed and produced today.

    Opening of the Siemens location Wuxi, 2004

    2004 - In the Chinese city of Wuxi, Siemens X-Ray Vacuum Technology Ltd. started production of X-ray tubes for computed tomography, radiography and fluoroscopy for China and neighboring countries.

    Siemens laboratory diagnostics

    In 2006 and 2007, Siemens took over the three long-standing laboratory diagnostics companies Dade Behring, Diagnostic Products Corporation, and Bayer Diagnostics. Siemens thus became the first supplier to combine diagnostic imaging, laboratory diagnostics, and medical information technology under one roof. 

    At the financial statement press conference in May 2014, the president and CEO of Siemens AG, Joe Kaeser, announced plans to establish the medical technology division as an independent company. The aim was to achieve greater flexibility. Siemens Healthcare GmbH was founded on May 1, 2015, and the new “Siemens Healthineers” brand was presented a year later.

    Llisting of Siemens Healthineers AG, 2018

    The listing of Siemens Healthineers AG on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange on March 16, 2018, finally ushered in a new chapter in the company’s history.

    Siemens Healhtineers Annual Shareholders’ Meeting, 2019

    In February 2019, the first Annual Shareholders’ Meeting took place and around three and a half years after the IPO, in September 2021, Siemens Healthineers was included in the German benchmark index (DAX).

    Following a long-standing collaboration, Siemens Healthineers and Varian Medical Systems merged in April 2021.

    Company History Book

    If you want to have a deeper dive into the company history discover our new book about the history of Siemens Healthineers.