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Medtronic CEO Ishrak praised for steering company in rough waters

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Two years into the tenure of Medtronic CEO Omar Ishrak, MPR visits the Minnesota-based company and reports that the executive is winning praise for improving the bottom line, even as the global medical device giant has struggled through a variety of difficulties.

Medtronic's stock is up about 45 percent and sales have increased since Ishrak took the helm, MPR reported.

Profits went up 16 percent during Ishrak's first year and fell about 4 percent in the second year, but profits remain above where they were a few years ago, MPR reports.

Ishrak has won accolades for the way he has handled controversies, including criticism of the company's much-criticized Infuse spine fusion product, and for being a steady hand steering the company through uncertainty related to the economy, heath care reform, and sagging demand for key products, MPR reports.

Investors Business Daily earlier this month reported more positive numbers: "It's hard to beat Medtronic for steady share price action, earnings and dividend growth lately. Shares of the world's biggest maker of medical devices have risen 27 percent this year, easily beating the S&P 500. They're up 38 percent from a year ago and 73 percent from a bottom of 30.18 in August 2011."

Among the company's recent projects is an artificial pancreas, Reuters reported.

Included in Ishrak's priorities: expanding into emerging markets like China and India, which has been even more challenging than he expected, the Business Journal reported last month.

Ishrak has a $1.2 million salary, with $6.2 million in total compensation for the year that ended April 30, the Star Tribune reported.

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