Medtronic seizes the moment with Medicrea acquisition


In paying €139m ($158m) for Medicrea International, Medtronic is clearly signalling its intention to grow in the spinal surgery field. Medicrea will mark Medtronic’s third spine acquisition since it paid $1.7bn for Mazor Robotics in 2018. Medtronic’s interest is likely to have been piqued by Medicrea’s high-tech UNiD system, which allows surgeons to simulate complex surgeries, develop surgical plans and use customised implants developed by Medicrea for those surgeries. Medicrea has the added lure of machine learning, with data collected from the simulations and surgery used to model how to improve the outcomes of future surgeries. In theory UNiD could also neatly fit into some of Medtronic’s other divisions, such as medical imaging. While Medtronic should be applauded for snagging what looks like a bargain, it could be argued there was an element of opportunism. With surgeries delayed due to Covid-19, Medicrea shares were feeling the pressure, notwithstanding a recent recovery, possibly making the group more amenable to an offer. With surgery schedules still not back to normal it might be reasonable to expect more deals between big medtech groups and their smaller surgical counterparts – witness the recent rumours of Medtronic’s interest in Intersect ENT as an example. 

Recent Medtronic deals
Target Company Deal value ($m) Company focus Deal date
Medicrea International 158 Spinal implants/surgery Jul 2020
StimGenics   Spinal cord stimulation  Jan 2020
Klue   Digital health/nutrition  Dec 2019
Titan Spine   Spinal implants Jun 2019
EPIX Therapeutics 316 Cardiology Mar 2019
Nutrino   Digital health/nutrition Jan 2019

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