Medical Devices Industry: Investment Facts and Industry Prospects
Curators: Stephen J Williams, PhD, Adam Sonnenberg, BSc and Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN
The Time to Think About the 3D-Printed Future Is Now
Dr. Lev-Ari, presents Selective Points made by Richard D’Aveni on May 15, 2015 in Harvard Business Review article, D’Aveni is the Bakala Professor of Strategy at Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business
The 3-D Printing Revolution
- Even more intriguing, though probably still years away, is what MIT calls 4-D printing, where the fourth dimension is time. These are objects embedded with “memory materials” that react to light or heat to form new shapes after delivery to the consumer. Imagine a piece of furniture that arrives flat, but then reshapes itself into a chair when exposed to sunlight.
- And these are just the general-purpose technologies. Also emerging is xerographic micro-assembly, which promises to greatly improve computer chip manufacture by implanting components of chips with electrical charges and putting them in a highly conductive fluid. Electrical fields can then assemble these “chiplets” into full chips with greater capabilities and fewer defects than conventional chip production. Likewise inbio-printing, researchers are adding magnetic nanoparticles to living cells and then using magnetic fields to assemble the cells into artificial tumors and functioning tissues.
- Big players are involved now in pushing additive manufacturing to the next level. Early phases of 3D printing involved startup companies with investments in the low seven digits. Stratasys and 3D Systems grew into industry leaders with approximately $1 billion in revenues each. Now we’re seeing much bigger stakes. Hewlett-Packard developed multi-jet fusion, leveraging its expertise in printer head technology to leapfrog the industry. CLIP comes from a startup, Carbon3D, but one with $40 million in funding from a VC group led by mainstay Sequoia Capital. MIT is investing heavily in 4-D printing. Xerox, which invented xerographic micro-assembly, had been testing the waters with an investment in startup 3D Systems. Once it saw the potential, it launched a major internal program leveraging many facets of its electronics expertise as well.
- In 2014 sales of industrial-grade 3-D printers in the United States were already one-third the volume of industrial automation and robotic sales. Some projections have that figure rising to 42% by 2020.
- One position in the ecosystem will prove to be the most central and powerful—and this fact is not lost on the management teams of the biggest players already in the business of additive manufacturing, such as eBay, IBM, Autodesk, PTC, Materialise, Stratasys, and 3D Systems. Many are vying to develop the platforms on which other companies will build and connect. They know that the role of platform provider is the biggest strategic objective they could pursue and that it’s still very much up for grabs.
- U.S. hearing aid companies converted to 100% 3-D printing in less than 500 days.
3D Printing: Who’s investing now and what’s coming next
The future: 3D printing in 2015 and beyond
The Share of Top Institutional Investors in Top Ten Cardiovascular Medical Devices Industry Leaders and in the Top Ten Orthopedic Medical Devices Industry Leaders and HealthCare Equipment
WHY A GOLDEN AGE for Investment in Medical Devices?
Frankly, my comment about the medical device industry being in a golden age is corroborated more by personal experiences rather than hard facts.
In the past few years, I have been exposed to more medical device startups than any other few year period in my 17+ year career.
- Startups developing a device to help patients with COPD.
- Startups developing technology to help males with fertility issues.
- Startups developing prostate cancer products.
- Startups developing custom-designed, patient-specific orthopedic implants.
- Startups developing a wound healing patch for dental applications.
I can go on and on about the volume and variety of medical device startups I’ve worked with and aware of. Yes, there are plenty in the digital space.
And all of these medical device startups I’ve had the pleasure of being exposed to have one thing in common: They all believe their products and technologies will change the world for the better.
Yes, there is a golden age in the medical device industry happening right now. With passionate inventors and entrepreneurs figuring out a way to make things happen despite difficulties finding funding they need.
Jon Speer has been in the medical device industry for over 16 years. In 2007, Jon started Creo Quality to help medical device companies with project management, quality systems, and regulatory submissions. As a result of his experience in the medical device industry, Jon had an idea to develop a software solution to improve how companies handle Design Controls. Because of this greenlight.guru was born. You can find him on Google+, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
MoneyTree™ Life Sciences Report
We bring you a quarterly publication based on US venture capital funding for the life sciences sector. The MoneyTree report is produced by PwC and The National Venture Capital Association (NVCA)*. Each quarterly contains the following sections: life sciences deals by quarter, stages, regional funding trends and a venture capital outlook. We also break down the life sciences sector into its subsegments, including biotech and medical device, to compare funding and investment trends by quarter.
Refer also to our previous publications for insights into venture capital investments.
MoneyTree™ venture capital funding: Biotech funding surges
MoneyTree™ venture capital funding: Biotech trending high
MoneyTree™ venture capital funding: Biotech soars to record high
MoneyTree™ venture capital funding: Biotech deals rising
MoneyTree™ venture capital funding: Falling behind
MoneyTree™ venture capital funding: Biotech boost
* Data is provided by Thomson Reuters.