Globus Medical’s David C. Paul, A Billionaire Thanks to a Robot

With a current net worth of approximately $1.1 billion, Globus Medical’s founder and current executive chairman David C. Paul has earned his spot on Forbes’ 2019 Billionaires List. What propelled Paul from his start as a mechanical engineer to a billionaire entrepreneur? Simple: a robot that can perform spinal surgery.

Paul founded Globus Medical in 2003 and took the medical device manufacturer public in 2012. However, it wasn’t until 2013 that Globus Medical—and Paul, then the company’s CEO—began to experience outsized success.

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That year, Paul took a trip to Phoenix to see one of the latest innovations in spinal surgery: a prototype robot called the Excelsius GPS capable of assisting surgeons in performing spinal fusions more quickly and accurately. Paul immediately saw the potential in the prototype, and Globus Medical bought the company behind the robot—Excelsius Surgical—just a few months later.

It was this purchase that has propelled Globus Medical’s growth ever since. The Excelsius GPS remains one of only two robots capable of assisting in spinal surgery currently available on the market. The company’s shares have more than doubled since 2014, with stocks soaring an incredible 65 percent following the spinal surgery robot’s FDA clearance in August 2017. This rapid growth has made Paul—who still owns about a quarter of his company—a billionaire almost overnight.

Paul and Globus Medical’s swift growth are all the more impressive given Paul’s background. Paul started his career off as a mechanical engineer, receiving his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Madras in India. He moved to the United States to attend Temple University, where he received his M.S. in Computer Integrated Mechanical Engineering Systems. Paul went on to join medical device manufacturing giant Synthes as an engineer before striking off on his own to found Globus Medical.

Paul stepped down from the CEO role in 2017 due to undisclosed health issues. As executive chairman, however, Paul still reportedly keeps a tight grip on his business through his 76 percent ownership of Globus Medical’s voting shares.

The 52-year-old Paul currently resides in Audubon, Pennsylvania.