Medtronic completed the previously-announced acquisition of Mazor Robotics, a transaction valued at US $1.7BB (or $1.3BB net MDT’s existing stake in Mazor and cash acquired).
Mazor joins Medtronic’s Neurosurgery business, part of the Restorative Therapies Group’s Brain Therapies division.
This acquisition is the culmination of a relationship that began in 2016 with a multi-phase commercial agreement for co-promotion, co-development and exclusive global distribution of certain Mazor products, as well as an equity investment in Mazor by Medtronic. This led to >80 installations of the Mazor X™ Robotic Guidance platform for spine surgery since the system’s launch in 2016.
The partnership pairs Mazor’s guidance tools with Medtronic’s implants, navigation and imaging technologies. Medtronic projects that the acquisition will generate a double-digit return on invested capital by year four, with an increasing contribution thereafter. During Medtronic’s most recent earnings call, Chairman and CEO Omar Ishrak noted that 70% of the company’s robotic sales are placements in which the account is paying for the unit by providing Medtronic with incremental spine share over a period of three to four years.
At the NASS 2018 Annual Meeting, Medtronic debuted Mazor X Stealth Edition: a combination of Mazor X fully integrated with Medtronic’s Stealth navigation for surgical planning, execution and confirmation. The system, now FDA cleared, is expected to launch by 1Q19, offering competition to Globus Medical’s ExcelsiusGPS system that already offers both navigation and robotics.
The move clearly indicates Medtronic’s belief in the future of guided spinal procedures. Many of its peers have technologies that could be or are being developed for use in the spine, including Johnson & Johnson’s Orthotaxy, Stryker’s Mako and Zimmer Biomet’s ROSA. Other systems include Brainlab’s Cirq and TINAVI Medical’s TiRobot, which is reported to be the only surgical robot capable of performing surgery on all spinal regions.
“In bringing [Medtronic and Mazor] together, we aim to accelerate the advancement and adoption of robotic-assisted surgery in spine for the benefit of patients, providers, and the healthcare system more broadly,” said Geoff Martha, Executive Vice President and President of the Restorative Therapies Group at Medtronic, in a prepared statement. “This is the latest example of our Surgical Synergy strategy, which we believe will transform spine care through procedural solutions that integrate implants, biologics and enabling technologies like navigation, 3D imaging, robotics and powered surgical tools.”
Mazor was founded in Israel and held its U.S. headquarters in Orlando. Post-acquisition, the future of the Orlando office is unclear, according to a report in The Orlando Sentinel. “The Orlando office plays an important role in the U.S., and we currently intend to maintain our operations there,” a Medtronic spokeswoman told the newspaper. “Now that the transaction has closed, our integration teams will share and review all aspects of their respective businesses in order to decide how to integrate Mazor into Medtronic’s Enabling Technologies business.”