By Kevin Madigan | kmadigan@atljewishtimes.com

BIZ-Eagles Endo Gilreath

EndoChoice CEO Mark Gilreath

An Atlanta-area medical technology company founded in 2008 has been designated the Eagle Star U.S. Company of the Year by Conexx, the former American-Israel Chamber of Commerce in the Southeast.

EndoChoice, a platform technology company centered on gastrointestinal endoscopy, is based in Alpharetta and recently merged with Peer Medical, an Israeli company that develops endoscopy technology, giving EndoChoice a research and development base in Israel while keeping its headquarters in the Southeast.
“This award recognizes EndoChoice’s sustaining commitment to Israel and having acknowledged Israel as an important partner in business,” Conexx representatives said in a statement, which described EndoChoice as a medical technology company focused on the manufacturing and commercialization of platform technologies including endoscopic imaging systems, infection control products and pathology services for specialists treating a wide range of gastrointestinal conditions, including colon cancer.

EndoChoice has a direct sales organization that serves more than 2,500 customers in the United States and works with distribution partners in 25 countries. It has rapidly developed a broad and innovative product portfolio, which includes the Full Spectrum Endoscopy System (Fuse).

Inc. Magazine recognized EndoChoice as one of the fastest-growing companies in the United States in 2014 for the fifth consecutive year, according to Conexx.

The company’s founder is CEO Mark Gilreath, the former president of Israeli-based pill camera maker Given Imaging, which has its U.S. headquarters in Duluth. Gilreath was the only non-Jewish executive at Given, which he ended up taking public and growing into one of the largest medical tech companies in Israel.

EndoChoice, started by Gilreath in his basement, is scheduled for its own public filing on the New York Stock Exchange, which is why Gilreath declined to talk to the Atlanta Jewish Times; stock regulations require a quiet period for companies leading up to their public listing, during which they must abstain from communicating with the media.

Former AICC President Tom Glaser, for whom the Eagle Star leadership award is named, is an admirer of Gilreath’s work and said in an article he wrote for The Times of Israel that Gilreath is “as strong a supporter of Israel as any American I know.”BIZ-Eagles Endo logo

Gilreath “feels Israelis are passionate and direct and that he shares a common drive with them to achieve the goal,” Glaser wrote. He quoted Gilreath as saying, “You want them (Israelis) by your side. They didn’t sign on for a job — it’s a cause to them. They are brilliant and emotionally stronger than most — wonderful partners in building a world-class organization.”

EndoChoice has more than 60 employees in Israel and 400 worldwide.

One of its best-known products is an endoscopic system known as Fuse, which is now approved by the Food and Drug Administration and is in use around the world.

“In a recent clinical study, Fuse found 69% more pre-cancerous polyps than traditional colonoscopes. Patients are beginning to ‘insist on Fuse’ for their colonoscopies,” Glaser wrote.

Gilreath was voted Business Person of the Year in 2013 by the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce in the emerging entrepreneur category and “is married to a saint,” according his Twitter profile.