Richard A. Cramer


Mr. Cramer is best known as the entrepreneur who founded Ivac and Imed, two major manufacturers of medical infusion pumps. Mr. Cramer founded Ivac in 1967, but later was forced out in a proxy fight. He founded Imed in 1972.

In 1982, Mr. Cramer sold the company to Warner-Lambert, and made his team rich. Mr. Cramer personally took home $70 million of the $465 million sale price.

Once he became wealthy, Mr. Cramer became a philanthropist, contributing to local research institutions and other charitable causes.

Mr. Cramer served as Scripps Research Institute chairman from 1991 until 1993. He also served on the board of the Copley Press, which owned The San Diego Union-Tribune.

San Diego’s biotechnology industry scarcely existed when Imed was sold. But Mr. Cramer established the template for the industry: Build a valuable company, sell it, repeat. By his example, and by the companies he founded, Mr. Cramer wove his DNA into the region’s biomedical community in ways that still shape the industry today.

Mr. Cramer died at the age of 79 in the Mediterranean principality of Monaco, where he moved more than two decades ago to escape a U.S. tax judgment he called unfair.

Source: Excerpts from San Diego Union Tribune.