New Blood Invigorates Dialysis Company

Fresenius, the low-profile German health-care outfit, is tightening management and boosting profits under its young, Harvard-educated CEO

Employees of German health-care provider Fresenius were surprised when, in 2003, longtime Chief Executive Gerd Krick chose Ulf Schneider as his successor—none more so than Schneider himself. Just 37 at the time, Schneider was unusually young to be the CEO of a German blue-chip company, and he had been at Fresenius for less than two years, serving as chief financial officer for the core dialysis business. Schneider says he hadn't been expecting the promotion.

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