Fresenius Medical Care, the world’s largest provider of dialysis products and services, is celebrating its 20th anniversary. The company, founded in 1996 when Fresenius merged its dialysis business with the U.S.-based dialysis services provider National Medical Care, now has more than 100,000 employees, operates approximately 3,500 dialysis clinics in over 45 countries, and treats some 300,000 patients. Every 0.7 seconds Fresenius Medical Care starts a dialysis treatment for a patient somewhere in the world. Over the past 20 years the number of patients under treatment in the company’s dialysis clinics has more than quintupled while the production of dialysis filters (dialyzers) has increased ten-fold, earnings more than eleven-fold, and sales almost twelve-fold.

The start of this success story dates back to the 1960s, when Fresenius began importing dialysis machines and dialyzers made by different companies and distributing them in Germany, gaining significant market share. The company launched its own dialysis machine in 1979 – the A2008, which became the world's top seller. Fresenius Medical Care subsequently expanded this market-leading position with successor models, and now produces more than half of all the dialysis machines sold in the world. In the early 1980s the company developed the first dialysis filters out of polysulfone, opening up a new era in the treatment of kidney disease: Dialyzers made from polysulfone are especially effective at cleaning the patient’s blood, and remain the industry standard today.

Success in dialysis products ultimately paved the way for the entry into dialysis services, which came in 1996, when Fresenius acquired National Medical Care and combined it with its own dialysis business to give birth to Fresenius Medical Care. The new company was listed on the Frankfurt and New York exchanges that year, and joined Germany’s benchmark DAX index in 1999.

Since its founding, Fresenius Medical Care has been the world’s leading provider of products and services for people with chronic kidney failure. The company has steadily strengthened this position as it consistently set new milestones: In 1999, the 100,000th dialysis machine was produced at the company’s Schweinfurt, Germany plant. In 2003, for the first time, the company treated more than 100,000 patients and made over 50 million dialyzers in a single year. Its 500 millionth dialyzer was produced in 2007 and, in 2013, its billionth. The year before, the 500,000th Fresenius Medical Care dialysis machine had come off the assembly line in Schweinfurt.

The company is constantly improving dialysis technology and introducing new, innovative treatment concepts. Earlier this year it launched the latest generation in hemodialysis machines, the 6008 CAREsystem, which delivers the highest therapy standards while optimizing dialysis treatment and improving economic efficiency.

A number of major strategic acquisitions over the years have contributed to Fresenius Medical Care’s strong growth. The company acquired Renal Care Group, the third-largest operator of dialysis centers in the United States, in 2006, followed by the purchase of another major U.S. dialysis center operator, Liberty Dialysis, in 2011. That same year, the acquisition of Euromedic significantly expanded Fresenius Medical Care’s presence in Central and Eastern Europe.

Fresenius Medical Care expects continued strong growth, with annual sales forecast to increase from $16.7 billion in 2015 to $28 billion in 2020. The company expects that, along with continued strong growth in its core business of dialysis products and the treatment of dialysis patients, dialysis-related medical services will contribute to achieving this target. These services include the provision of vascular access as well as in-patient and acute care by specialist physicians.

Rice Powell, Chief Executive Officer of Fresenius Medical Care, said: “We are committed to enhancing the quality of life of people suffering from kidney disease. Achieving advances in dialysis by providing our patients with innovative therapies and the best possible products has been our motivation for 20 years, and it remains so today. We are in an outstanding position to continue Fresenius Medical Care’s unique success story in the coming years.”

To mark 20 years since the founding of Fresenius Medical Care and the company’s listing on the stock exchange, Rice Powell will ring in the start of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange’s daily trading on October 12. Immediately after, he will present a €20,000 donation to “Bundesverband Niere,” a German charity that works to improve the lives of chronic kidney disease patients. The event can be seen live on the Internet at 8:50 a.m. under the following link: (Replay)

Message to Editors: An electronic press kit on the 20th anniversary of Fresenius Medical Care, containing texts, photos and videos for editorial use can be found under: