Shining Light Company: Varian Medical Systems

When it comes to noble causes, it’s hard to top saving lives. That’s the mission of this week’s SATURDAY SPOTLIGHT: Shining Light Company-Varian Medical Systems (Symbol: VAR). Founded by a group of scientists in the 1940s with global headquarters in Palo Alto, California, Varian is now the world’s leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. In addition, the company also supplies parts and equipment used in x-ray imaging, cargo screening, and industrial inspection. Each year, millions of lives are saved, thanks in part to this equipment, and the company’s goal is to increase that number by 100,000 each year.

Mission and Core Values

Varian’s mission and core values further emphasize their objective of helping people in their fight with cancer. Varian has a Code of Conduct that mandates its employees act with integrity while meeting the highest standards of ethics, quality, and safety. Not only does the company desire to put customers first, but Varian’s united purpose in saving lives exists for the patient’s entire lifetime. The company is committed to walking alongside patients long term as they seek to overcome the dreadful disease of cancer. Shining Light Companies like Varian that show a commitment to people and not just to the bottom line are difficult to find in today’s economy. However, it is refreshing to spotlight a company in the medical field that is making a difference beyond the superior technological advances they’ve brought to the industry.For more information on their mission and core values, please visit:

People over Profits

Employee experience is another key indicator of a successful company. Varian Medical Systems has received excellent reviews from those on the front lines of the business. One specific employee stated on a company review website that Varian provides an opportunity to make an impact at work, while also citing that the job was both challenging and rewarding. Other employees cited the company’s vision to make a difference in the fight against cancer as a positive aspect of employment. Another employee remarked that Varian listened to feedback and valued experience. A company is only as strong as their employees; therefore, it is important to take note of Varian’s success in both caring for and empowering their employees. They clearly recognize that their mission’s success lies in the hands of their employees. They value people over profits, a true mark of a Shining Light Company.

Philanthropy and Service

Varian is committed to supporting the communities in which they are located, as evidenced by their involvement, giving, and sponsorship. The company has developed and produced a line of linear accelerators that better suits developing countries and the general conditions encountered in those countries. The products made are designed to enable advanced treatments at a lower entry point, helping those less fortunate afford medical care. Varian not only helps other countries but is active on the home front as well. They have taken part in sponsoring many major healthcare and cancer management research activities, while also supporting charity and patient care initiatives in the local community. Lastly, the Varian Medical Systems Foundation makes grants, donations and gifts to various non-profit organizations that meet their intended criteria. For example, Varian has funded the National Cancer Survivors Day Foundation (NCSD) Bureau. This day of celebration for survivors of cancer takes place all around the country. Celebrity guests are featured as speakers and story after story of survival and victory over cancer are shared with enormous crowds. Not only does the NCSD celebrate those who have battled and beaten the disease, they also rally support around those still in the fight. They are constantly looking for ways to help strengthen and build up patients and their families.This is a worthy organization to say the least, and companies like Varian that financially support the event make it all possible. Giving back is important to Varian Medical Systems, and philanthropy is often what separates a Shining Light Company from the normal bottom-line infatuated corporation. This is one of the many reasons we are proud to shed light on such a terrific company.For more information on Varian’s philanthropy and giving, please visit:

While Varian seeks to continually develop better capabilities and systems, they strive to do so in ways that increase access to advance care, improve clinical outcomes, optimize safety, and make a positive impact on the community – both locally and internationally. As part of its “Access to Care” program, Varian uses its growing global network of education centers to ensure that personnel in developing nations receive proper training and education. The company has also partnered with organizations like the International Atomic Energy Agency to help equip those nations with the necessary radiotherapy machines.

Despite the advances in modern medicine, cancer remains a scary word.  Varian understands that knowledge of the science behind the treatments and what to expect from them can make a big difference in a patient’s attitude, decisions, and life. That is why a significant portion of their website is devoted to providing such information as well as encouragement and stories from cancer survivors. Check it out here:

Final Thoughts

Varian Medical Systems is in the business of saving lives. Not only have they intro immense technological advances to cancer treatment and detection, they have also shown a commitment to serving both their community and those fighting cancer across the United States and around the world. Varian meets all of the criteria to be classified as Shining Light Company and we are proud to focus on such an extraordinary, countercultural  business.



DISCLOSURE: Shining Lights companies are those companies we have identified as exemplary companies living out the Golden Rule and exhibiting the virtues of Integrity, Humility, Diligence, Caring and Courage. This is intended for general information purposes concerning only the values, corporate culture and business practices of the companies being spotlighted. It DOES NOT incorporate any analysis of the companies’ investment merit based on intrinsic value, fundamental analysis, etc. This must not be construed as investment advice or a buy/sell recommendation.These companies may or may not be included in our LightPoint Portfolios at any given time.