Charlie is the Founder and Chairman of Martin Ventures, a Nashville-based investment company. Charlie has over 50 years of experience operating large, complex healthcare systems. At Martin Ventures, he serves as Chairman. He is dedicated to building and investing in healthcare technology, healthcare services, and healthcare technology-enabled services companies that optimize existing healthcare provider businesses, develop new and innovative models of care, and empower the healthcare consumer.
Charlie has been praised as one of the most successful serial CEOs in hospital management. His successes include building de novo hospitals, acquiring and improving for-profit and not-for-profit hospitals, and leading sustained periods of rapid growth in revenues, earnings, EPS, and shareholder value as Chairman and CEO of numerous hospital companies. His additional experience as an entrepreneur and investor in diverse healthcare sectors includes ambulatory surgery centers, imaging centers, and cancer centers, among others.
Early in Charlie’s career, he helped launch General Care Corp, which started as a nursing home firm. Serving as the Chief Operating Officer and Director, he changed the company to an acute hospital company that Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) acquired for $78 million in 1980.
After General Care Corp. was acquired, Charlie joined HCA as Executive Vice President and Board Director for ten years. During his tenure, he was responsible for Mergers & Acquisitions, including taking HCA from 140 owned or managed hospitals to over 200 hospitals, and held contracts to manage 200 more.
In 1987 while serving as EVP and Board Director of HCA, Charlie and several colleagues agreed to spin out 104 underperforming hospitals from HCA. This ultimately turned into a healthcare company called HealthTrust Inc. Charlie served as President, Chief Operating Officer, and Board Director of HealthTrust Inc. He oversaw the 104 hospitals’ operations, including increasing hospital operating margins from low teens to low teens by over 20% in one year. After the operating margins were north of 20%, HealthTrust Inc. went public in 1991 and in 1994 was ultimately acquired by HCA in a stock-for-stock transaction valued at $3.6 billion.
After HealthTrust Inc. rejoined HCA, Charlie bought the hospital chain Republic Health when it went bankrupt in 1992 and built a new healthcare system called OrNda Healthcare Corp. Under Charlie’s leadership as chairman and CEO, OrNda grew from revenues of $450 million to $3 billion in four years. OrNda became the nation’s third-largest investor-owned hospital chain with 53 hospitals and eventually sold to Tenet Healthcare Corp. in 1997 for $3.2 billion.
After selling OrNda HealthCorp. to Tenet Healthcare Corp., Charlie founded another healthcare system called Vanguard Health Systems in 1998. Charlie served as Vanguard’s Founder, Chairman, and CEO for sixteen years. In August 2004, the Blackstone Group acquired two-thirds of Vanguard’s equity. The deal valued Vanguard, which had 16 hospitals, at $1.75 billion. Under his leadership, the hospital chain grew from 0 to 28 hospitals, with $6.5 billion in revenue. In 2011 Vanguard went public and, in 2013, was acquired by Tenet Healthcare for $4.3 billion.
Charlie’s entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to healthcare have also led him to serve on numerous Boards of Directors, including the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Law and Rand Health, one of the world’s largest independent health research groups. In addition, his extensive experience and experience in the healthcare industry have made him a sought-after advisor and mentor to healthcare entrepreneurs and investors. Charlie’s legacy in the healthcare industry is marked by his leadership in transforming healthcare delivery and his commitment to investing in and supporting innovative healthcare solutions.