Hospitals

Cleveland Clinic’s Michael Roizen: His many business ventures

Dr. Michael Roizen knows wellness. He also knows commerce.

Cleveland Clinic‘s first-ever chief wellness officer jumped on the wellness trend early. He’s best known as one of the “YOU” docs, thanks to his high-profile collaborations with TV star Dr. Mehmet Oz. But Roizen has showcased an innate ability to launch new concepts and businesses that leverage his personal wellness image and his affiliation with Cleveland Clinic. His investments and enterprises continue to leverage his YOU-doc status, making Roizen a wellness enforcer, an early-stage investor and the one-time backer of a quick-serve health-drink machine.

Dr. Michael Roizen knows wellness. He also knows commerce.

Cleveland Clinic‘s first-ever chief wellness officer jumped on the wellness trend early. He’s best known as one of the “YOU” docs, thanks to his high-profile collaborations with TV star Dr. Mehmet Oz.

But Roizen has showcased an innate ability to launch new concepts and businesses that leverage his personal wellness image and his affiliation with Cleveland Clinic. His investments and enterprises continue to leverage his YOU-doc status, making Roizen a wellness enforcer, an early-stage investor and the one-time backer of a quick-serve health-drink machine.

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Who is Michael Roizen: The Brand? Here’s a list of all his current and past enterprises.

RealAge: Roizen’s ascension as a public face traces back to the success of his RealAge book franchise. A 1999 book “RealAge: Are You as Young as You Can Be?” became a New York Times best-seller — and that sent Roizen off to the races. Other books under the RealAge title followed, focusing on topics like dieting and makeovers.

The books spawned the RealAge website, which is operated by Hearst Digital Media and hawks plenty of books and DVDs, in addition to being packed with wellness and beauty tips.

The YOU Docs: Roizen and Oz have teamed up as the YOU Docs to pen several best-selling books under the “YOU” banner, including “YOU: The Owner’s Manual” and “YOU: The Smart Patient.” Their “YOU: On a Diet” spent 11 consecutive weeks at No. 1 on the New York Times list, according to Roizen’s Cleveland Clinic bio. The YOU Docs also pen syndicated columns that are printed nationwide in newspapers such as the Chicago Sun-Times and Charleston, South Carolina’s Post & Courier.

The RealAge and YOU franchises have helped make Roizen an in-demand guest on talk shows and on the lecture circuit and have yielded several PBS specials and a radio show, establishing Roizen as the King of All Media when it comes to wellness.

Cleveland Clinic. Cleveland Clinic provides Roizen significant additional credibility to launch his businesses. But Roizen has also delivered a whole suite of initiatives for the health system that put it squarely into the wellness movement. Roizen is the face of efforts like Wellness 360-5, a separate wellness portal run by Cleveland Clinic, the hospital’s “Let’s Move It” campaign and has lead the Cleveland Clinic’s addition to the health portal iVillage, among other things.

YOUBeauty.com: Lauched earlier this year with a $3 million investment from Cleveland Clinic and Contour Venture Partners, YOUBeauty.com aspires to teach women how to achieve greater beauty through a healthier lifestyle. The site’s backers are hoping to differentiate YOUBeauty from the plethora of other beauty-focused sites by focusing on science.

“Our job is to gather the best science and make it accessible and actionable to the average consumer,” CEO Steve Lindseth said in July. The site features links to research papers and offers quizzes to help users come up with action plans to improve their beauty and health. Oz and Roizen curate the site’s content, which includes lots of articles from various experts on health and beauty topics.

Enforcer eCoaching: This recent Roizen startup aims to help customers adopt healthier behaviors through guidance, support and wellness advice that the company provides through digital channels. Roizen and Oz are both principals with the company.

On Dr. Oz’s blog, Roizen has referred to himself as “The Enforcer” and described his role under that title as conducting e-mail coaching sessions with employees of a large company. In a tweet in August, Roizen said the company would focus on advice around smoking cessation, weight loss and type 2 diabetes.

Omnifrio Beverage Creations. Omnifrio aims to sell a single-cup, cold-beverage-making machine that’s similar to Keurig‘s time-saving (if overpriced) one-cup coffee brewers and pods. Roizen said he invested in Omnifrio, and the company was sold earlier this year to North Carolina-based Primo Water in a $13 million deal. Omnifrio hasn’t yet completed its product development process, and it must do so “for full earn-out” of its sale, according to Roizen.

Martek Biosciences. Roizen stated in an e-mail that he was the head of Martek’s scientific advisory board. The Maryland-based company that sells nutritional products was acquired for $1.1 billion in 2010 by Dutch chemical and pharmaceutical company DSM. Company officials would like Roizen to still play a role as an advisor, but Roizen said he has no contract “or other part of” the company.

YET2. This is an outlet from which Roizen invests. “YET2 in a managed investment company that I placed some of my money with;  I do not have any decision or other interest in it, but it does invest in startup companies,” Roizen said in an e-mail.

The others: There’s a host of other affiliations Roizen also holds, including the virtually unknown Food for CTRAWFFYE. Roizen also receives royalties from publishers Harper Collins and Simon & Schuster, plus Progenics Pharmaceuticals. He’s a consultant or speaker for Oprah’s Harpo Radio.