CSL managing director in the spotlight

With less than two weeks to go until the long-time managing director of blood plasma group CSL (ASX: CSL) Brian McNamee hangs up his lab coat and retires, The Australian Financial Review has reported on an outstanding tenure that saw McNamee take “CSL from a $23 million dollar government entity to a $28 billion global giant.” It is certainly an impressive feat and long-term CSL shareholders will no doubt be incredibly grateful to McNamee for creating so much shareholder value.

Biotechnology and medical device companies can be a great hunting ground for investors to sniff out a successful firm at the early stages of its technology development and then stay aboard for a long and profitable ride. Shareholders in implantable hearing device firm Cochlear (ASX: COH) and breathing device manufacturer ResMed  (ASX: RMD), like CSL shareholders, have also enjoyed outstanding returns. As the chart below shows, these three stocks have all substantially outperformed the S&P/ASX 200 Index (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) over the past 13 years.


Source: Google Finance

Foolish takeaway

The performance at CSL shows what great management can achieve and why many of the world’s greatest investors insist on only investing in companies with management teams which they admire and trust.

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Motley Fool contributor Tim McArthur has no financial interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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