Former GE CEO Jeff Immelt named chairman of Athenahealth

Former General Electric CEO as well as Chairman Jeff Immelt was appointed chairman of the Athenahealth board, the company said Wednesday.

“We are thrilled to welcome Jeff as the completely new independent chairman of the athenahealth Board,” Dev Ittycheria, chair of the board’s nominating as well as corporate governance committee said in a statement.

The health-care technology company, which provides network-enabled services for hospital as well as ambulatory clients, cited Immelt’s “digital expertise” among the reasons for the appointment. In a statement, Athenahealth credited him with “driving the first wave of digitization across healthcare enterprises as well as the healthcare industry at large.”

“Having considered numerous highly qualified candidates, the Board determined which Jeff’s deep expertise as well as broad relationships inside healthcare industry, combined with his drive for industry transformation through innovation, ideally position him to be a great partner to the Board as well as management team as we work to profitably grow as well as scale the Company as well as drive value creation,” Ittycheria added.

After 16 years as GE chairman as well as CEO, Immelt stepped down in October 2017.

Immelt led the company through the Sept. 11 attacks, the financial crisis as well as oil cost swings. Under his leadership, GE sold or spun off major businesses, including appliances, insurance as well as plastics, as well as NBCUniversal, among others. Under Immelt, GE went by a far-flung conglomerate to an industrial company focused on the faster-growing industrial as well as power sectors.

however Immelt has come under fire by critics for poor leadership decisions which left GE cash strapped. He has been criticized for poorly timed investments as well as decisions about mergers as well as acquisitions. He’s also been critiqued for excessive spending habits, including bringing an extra corporate jet on business trips — just in case of emergencies.

Immelt plans to purchase $1 million of Athenahealth common stock inside open market. Shares of Athenahealth gained 3.7 percent after the announcement.

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