Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Med device maker CleveX hires new CEO - Business First of Columbus:

Med device maker CleveX hires new CEO - Business First of Columbus:

A Columbus medical device maker has hired a new management chief as it works to improve the sales of its initial product.
CleveX, based at the TechColumbus business incubator, said Monday it brought on Sam Finkelstein, former CEO of Miamisburg-based Riverain Medical, as chief executive. Former CleveX CEO Gary Smith is now serving as company president.
Smith said in an interview that his move to president was under mutual agreement with the board and allows him to focus more on the sales and marketing of ExiClip, a product that removes moles and skin lesions and closes the wound in one quick motion. The product replaces a scalpel-and-stitch procedure that takes up to 15 minutes.
CleveX had planned on an October 2008 launch of ExiClip, but manufacturing and inventory troubles delayed the release to 2009. Smith said CleveX rolled out the product in March after a pilot launch in January designed to gauge interest.
“We’ve had a good response on the dermatology side of the business, and that’s our target market,” Smith said. CleveX estimates ExiClip could be used in more than 15 million procedures annually.
A few months into the launch of ExiClip, which sells for $30 to $35, Smith said the company has about $100,000 of inventory. After ramping up the sales push this year, CleveX expects to generate about $1 million in revenue in 2010 from the product, he said. Before the launch of ExiClip was delayed, the company told Columbus Business First last fall that it projected sales of $3 million this year.
Despite the delay, Smith said the company continues to hold to a goal of boosting its staff to 12 employees, a target it plans to hit next year. The company has six workers and expects to employ 10 by the end of the year, he said.
CleveX is backed by funding from the Ohio TechAngels Fund, Reservoir Venture Partners II LP and Plymouth Venture Partners.


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