In the German Healthcare Export Group (GHE), established in the year 1991, 42 innovative and strongly growing companies from the area of medical technologies have come together to encourage an exchange of information and experiences between members and to serve as internationally proven partner for highest quality medical technologies. GHE represented almost the entire medical technology product range. The GHE combined innovative technology, high quality products „Made in Germany“ with excellent services and attendances, which included a key focus on a joint presence at the leading trade fairs like MEDICA and Arab Health.
The GHE was founded in 1991 under the name “German Community of Interest for the Export of Pharmaceutical, Laboratory, Dental and Medical Technology” (Deutsche Export-Interessengemeinschaft Pharma, Labor, Dental und Medizintechnik). At that time – which coincided with the Second Gulf War – information coming from the Near East was extremely sparse, and it was this very circumstance that that inspired Heinz-Jürgen Witzke (Beta Verlag) and Udo Pawelka (then “Sartorius AG”) to organise a group of companies that would focus exclusively on international exports. “We felt that we were not receiving sufficient support from German politics, and therefore wanted to get something going ourselves, so we organized a self-help group as it were”, explains Witzke, who is today Honorary Chairman of the German Healthcare Export Group. It didn’t take long for the idea of an export forum to take hold and for leading international companies, such as B. Braun, Eppendorf, Atmos and Dräger, to join the Group as founding members.
Initially, the Group’s focus was on individual geographical regions only. “Because of the war in Iraq, GHE originally limited its area of interest to the Near- and Middle East. This, however, changed quite quickly”, said Witzke. The meetings held in order to exchange information soon started to include areas like the Far East, Eastern Europe and South America. However, with all of these meetings, the practical benefits they would create for member companies always stood in the foreground.