The 2020 Top 30 Global Medical Device Companies

Leadership changes, divestments, and portfolio-building partnerships—through acquisition or collaboration—were common threads among medtech’s largest players.

2019’s passing marks two years without the type of annual blockbuster deal the medical device industry had become accustomed to. That’s not to say M&A activity was quiet—a number of the world’s largest medtech makers spent billions last year to boost their portfolios. Last year’s largest deal saw 3M buy advanced wound care and specialty surgical firm Acelity for $6.7 billion. Boston Scientific closed the book on its $4.2 billion BTG deal, gaining products used in minimally invasive procedures targeting cancer and vascular diseases. Johnson & Johnson continued its move toward surgical robotics with its $3.4 billion purchase of Auris Health.

Significant shedding took place in the Top 30 as well. GE sold its BioPharma unit to Danaher for $21 billion. Danaher extracted its Dental business, which became independent, publicly-traded Envista. Alcon formally completed its spinoff from Novartis last April. And, 3M sold its drug delivery business—excluding the transdermal portfolio—to an Altaris Capital Partners affiliate for $650 million.

Last year also saw the departure of a remarkable number of chief executives. Omar Ishrak announced his retirement after nine years at Medtronic’s helm. Abbott leader Miles White retired after a 21-year tenure—the second longest for a non-founder in today’s S&P 100. After nearly 40 years serving BD, Vincent Forlenza stepped down as CEO. Following a bout of infighting over the leader of newly formed EssilorLuxottica, Francesco Millieri became CEO of Luxottica Group and Paul du Saillant began leading Essilor International. (The search for EssilorLuxottica’s chief executive is still underway at the time of writing.) B. Braun chief execs Prof. Dr. Heinz-Walter Große (B. Braun Melsungen AG) and Caroll H. Neubauer (B. Braun Medical Inc.) also retired from the company. Hiroyuki Sasa stepped down as Olympus’ CEO, and Smith+Nephew leader Namal Nawana departed the firm after a purported dispute over his pay.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic did not begin to take hold until early this year, its effects on medtech’s largest manufacturers cannot be ignored. Thus, information is embedded in some reports about 2020 financial performance and how medtech’s largest firms have aided the fight against the virus.

By Medical Product Outsourcing

Image Credit: MPO


About Peter Coffaro 487 Articles
A growth-driven and strategic executive, Peter Coffaro commands more than 25 years of progressive management success within the medical device industry. Recognized by the World Journal of Orthopedics, Exponential Healthtech, and as one of the top medical sales influencers in the industry; he has 10 years of combined sales management experience and has held positions as a Director, General Manager, Distributor, and Vice President. Peter has worked for some of the top orthopedic companies in the world - Zimmer, DePuy, and Stryker. He is also the founder of OrthoFeed: a popular blog that covers digital orthopedic news and emerging medical technologies. Peter is a three-time Hall of Fame award winner at Johnson and Johnson and has an extensive background in organizational development, business development, sales management, digital marketing, and professional education. Peter holds a B.S. degree in Biology and Chemistry from Northern Illinois University.

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