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- 07/11/2017

Boston Scientific wants to conquer the medical device market, at least a part of it

Pharma Horizon

Boston Scientific Corp, a 38-year-old maker of medical devices, has made a move quite rare  for medical device companies: it ha aired a  television commercial, its first time ever.

The ad, targeting families of the millions of older Americans with irregular heartbeats, promtes the  device called Watchman that seals a pocket in a patient’s heart chamber to prevent blood clots that can trigger strokes.

As said a rare move for medical device companies  but for Boston Scientific is part of a strategy to promote a new generation of products designed to propel it into a top position in the markets for cardiac, endoscopic, urological, and other devices. 

“Hospitals want to drive great outcomes, and they also want to save money. So what they’re typically doing is reducing down the number of suppliers that they work with,” chief executive Mike Mahoney said in an interview to the Boston Globe at Boston Scientific’s new headquarters. “What’s most important to us is to have very differentiated products so that when Mass. General or whoever picks partners, we’re part of the answer.”

“This is a very socially impactful ad,” Ian Meredith, Boston Scientific’s chief medical officer said. “It’s really identifying that there’s an alternative for people who can’t take anti-coagulation or who are struggling with anti-coagulation [medicines]. And a lot of primary care doctors don’t realize this option’s available.”

But this is jut the tip of the iceberg. 

With no similar devices available in the United States and just one competitor in Europe, Boston Scientific expects it to eventually ring up about $1 billion in annual sales.

The company is also rolling out dozens of other new products and technologies, from a minimally invasive heart valve replacement technique to a spinal cord stimulation system that can reduce chronic pain leading to opioid addiction. However, the company is still way behind medical technology giants such as Medtronic PLC and Johnson & Johnson. Furthermore  doesn’t compete in the lucrative markets for orthopedic or general surgery devices.

Boston Scientific is also thinking to expand in the Europe market with its Lotus product by the end of the year and is  awaiting FDA approval for US sale of Lotus by the middle of next year.

Mahoney called Lotus a “second-generation platform” that is thinner and more flexible than competing products, making it easier for heart surgeons to implant.
Also the growing demand for aortic valves inserted through the leg with a catheter rather than through open heart surgery is projected to create a multibillion-dollar market over the next five years.
In Europe it will compete with older-technology products from Medtronic and Edwards Lifesciences Corp, however last spring in a scientific conference in Paris, reported findings that showed its procedure was more effective than the Medtronic valve replacement system in a clinical trial.
“We’re starting from zero, so this will be a tremendous growth opportunity,” Mahoney said. “We’re entering a market that will be $5 billion by 2021 with a very disruptive platform.”
With its new product portfolio, Boston Scientific is eyeing market niches that could generate a combined $13 billion in annual sales by 2020. But rival device makers are also targeting these areas, so there’s no guarantee that Boston Scientific will come out on top.
However “The goal is to continue growing faster than our peers.” Mahoney, making very clear  the aim of the company





Source: The Boston Globe