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.
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.
“Your tubes are really very good”
Quote from a letter from Röntgen to RGS
Quote from a letter from Röntgen to RGS
World War I
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.
X-ray tubes made in Rudolstadt
1919 - Faced with the dire economic circumstances in the aftermath of World War I, the engineer Alfred Ungelenk and the glass-blower Otto Kiesewetter took control of their own destiny and opened a small workshop for X-ray tubes in Rudolstadt. Within a few years, this two-man business developed into a key production facility for X-ray tubes and built up a large workforce.
Siemens & Halske takes over 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.
1932/33 – The merger was also completed from a structural perspective with the founding of Siemens-Reiniger-Werke (SRW). The manufacturing was concentrated in Erlangen.
World War II
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.
Back on the world stage
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.
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.
The founding of Siemens AG
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).
Production around the globe
After the years of postwar reconstruction, the company intensified its global outlook. Production sites were added all around the world.
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.
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.
In the Middle Kingdom
1983 - Medical technology from Siemens has been used in China since the beginning of the 20th century. In 1983, Siemens set up an overseas branch in China. Increasingly close business relations between Siemens and China led to the publication of the first Chinese edition of Electromedica, Siemens’ medical customer journal, in 1985.
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.
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.
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.
A new look
At the beginning of the 1990s: To get fit for the future complete modernization and renovation of the production facility was required. The decision was made to expand Forchheim further and to build a new factory in Erlangen.
©Roswitha Götz, Nordbayerische Nachrichten - Forchheim
1986 – The construction of the location in Forchheim started. In the new factory sheet metal claddings for the equipment were produced. At the opening of the production hall our factory orchestra played!
Everything under one roof
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.
Forging a new path
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.
Welcome to the Frankfurt Stock Exchange!
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.
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).
Siemens Healthineers and Varian
Following a long-standing collaboration, Siemens Healthineers and Varian Medical Systems merged in April 2021.
“By bringing together our unique and highly complementary portfolios and capabilities, we will support oncology clinicians and patients in achieving better outcomes and move even closer to achieving our vision of a world without fear of cancer.”
Head of the Business Area Varian
Head of the Business Area Varian