Jim Mazzo announced that he is retiring from his position as president of ophthalmic devices and head of the ophthalmic devices strategic business unit for Zeiss, effective May 1, 2020. He will continue to support the company as an advisor. Euan Thomson, PhD, will succeed Mr. Mazzo as president of ophthalmic devices and head of the ophthalmic devices strategic business unit.
In an interview with Eyewire News, Mr. Mazzo discussed why he felt this was the right time to step down from his role at Zeiss.
“When I took the job at Zeiss three and a half years ago, three things needed to happen: We needed to increase the pace of innovation; we needed to be more aggressive in acquisitions; and we needed a more outward face—both with the press and with customers,” Mr. Mazzo said. “For me personally, I’ve accomplished what I wanted to accomplish, and now I want to get out of the way and let this great team grow even faster.”
Mr. Mazzo, who has more than 40 years in the ophthalmic industry, said he will continue to support Zeiss as an advisor. He also said leaving his current role will allow him to increase his involvement in ophthalmic industry.
“I’m actually going to be more involved in ophthalmology than I have been in the last 40 years,” he said. “When you’re running a large company, you can’t do a lot of the things you want to do. This allows me to get more involved in other companies.”
Mr. Mazzo said he will continue as executive chair of Neurotech, and take on a more senior role with genetic test maker Avellino Labs. He will continue serving on the boards of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) and the European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons (ESCRS), and will soon be joining an additional ophthalmic board.
Meanwhile, Dr. Thomson, who currently holds the position of head of the digital business unit for Zeiss, will take over for Mr. Mazzo on May 1. He will continue to guide digital activities.
Dr. Thomson holds a PhD in physics from the University of London and has more than 30 years of experience in medical technology. Before joining Zeiss in September 2019, he was President and CEO of Photoelectron Corporation, President and CEO of Accuray Inc., worked in venture capital, and was head of digital health at Samsung Strategy and Innovation Center. Most recently, Mr. Thomson led digital technology development for Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices.
“Jim has been an integral part of growing our global ophthalmology business and has strengthened a customer-oriented mindset and service into the Zeiss culture,” Dr. Ludwin Monz, President and CEO of Carl Zeiss Meditec AG, said in the news release. “His leadership, insights, and guidance have been instrumental in building a strong team while creating a global approach through regional alignment and increasing visibility of professional education for customers. We thank him for his knowledge, leadership, and many contributions in helping advance eye care. We are looking forward to continuing this path under Euan Thomson’s leadership.”
Andrew Chang, head of sales for ophthalmic devices, will be appointed as President of Carl Zeiss Meditec. He will continue to lead the global ophthalmic sales organizations including US Sales and Service, based in Dublin, California.