Win with China: Philips CEO sees company a local player in China
By Cheng Lei
Phillips has been developing what it calls the HealthTech business in recent years, investing largely into technological innovations to improve healthcare and lifestyle.
The business plan of the Amsterdam-headquartered company is in line with China’s "Big Health" initiative, which encompasses a wide range of healthcare industries, including pharmaceuticals, healthcare products, medical equipment, as well as sports equipment.
So what steps is Phillips exactly taking to further expand the HealthTech business in China and around the world? 
Health burden is rising in this increasingly aging human society, and Phillips is investing over two billion US dollars in R&D, with most of the money going into software. 
"That’s because we see new technologies, such as big data, are playing such an important role in understanding diseases, and in supporting diagnosis and treatments," said Frans van Houten, president and CEO of Phillips. 
Phillips at an international medical equipment fair in Beijing, August 20, 2017 /VCG Photo

Phillips at an international medical equipment fair in Beijing, August 20, 2017 /VCG Photo

In China, Phillips is doing those researches through collaborations and partnerships with local companies. The company signed an agreement with Peking University First Hospital in 2015 to put its new personal health management system into practical use. 
Cooperating with Chinese clinics, research institutions and tech companies are not new to Phillips. The company is over 100 years in China, and has been engaged in R&D with locals for the past 30 years. 
"That is the way to operate. So Phillips is like a local Chinese company, we bring our most advanced technologies here, but also have over 2,000 people here in R&D," said Houten. 
Though Houten noted that artificial intelligence diagnose better with fewer mistakes, he doesn’t see real doctors and nurses being replaced anytime soon. 
Looking into the future, Houten expects technology will make diagnosis faster and more precise. He also hopes precision health intervention, also known as personalized medicine, can one day treat diseases properly and help patients fully recover from their suffering.