Medtech sales reach a record high as R&D spend and employee counts climb

Supply Chain EVP Greg Smith sees fewer suppliers in Medtronic’s future

Autotransfusion device maker ships units to Ukraine

How IP protection is enabling robotic surgery innovation

Connected device design for the real world: Managing the development process

FDA details plans to expand remote safety assessments for device makers

Contract manufacturer Minnetronix Medical launches its first in-house product, MindsEye

The Medtech Big 100 is bigger than ever

The tide has turned.

The Medtech Big 100Medical Design & Outsourcing‘s annual revenue ranking of the world’s largest medical device companies — is growing again and the pump appears primed for more.

You may recall that last year’s analysis of the industry’s 100 largest firms revealed a year-over-year drop in combined sales as the COVID-19 pandemic turned our world upside down. We lost family, friends and colleagues. Surgeries were postponed and canceled. Supply chains snapped. Markets tanked.

Despite massive sales gains in COVID-19 diagnostics and other pandemic-related products, last year’s Big 100 revenue totaled $415.3 billion, down from $420.3 billion the year before.

This year’s Big 100 list totals $440.9 billion, a significant move in the right direction. But the good news doesn’t stop there. R&D spending is also up, and many of those investments will yield sales in the years and decades ahead. Employment is also growing again, though it has yet to return to 2019 levels.

Even with ongoing challenges such as inflation and supply chain woes, it’s worth celebrating the industry’s recovery from its pandemic lows. Senior Editor Danielle Kirsh has more analysis in this edition’s cover story, including a ranking of the largest R&D spenders, top employers and more details on individual companies that stood out. Special thanks for this team effort are also due to Brian Buntz, Chris Newmarker — who ranks the world’s largest orthopedic companies in this month’s edition — and Sean Whooley.

You’ll also hear from the co-founders of Sisu Global Health, which developed an autotransfusion device that’s helping patients in Africa and Ukraine when bagged blood isn’t available.

Also in these pages, Medtronic Supply Chain EVP Greg Smith discusses efforts to tame the supply chain at the biggest company in medtech. The former Walmart executive said he sees fewer suppliers in Medtronic’s future, but also spelled out what Medtronic’s looking for in its partners.

Rounding out this edition, check out Tom Salemi’s preview of DeviceTalks West in Santa Clara Oct. 19-20, a collection of catheter innovations in Tubing Talks, and a look at how DeepMind’s AlpaFold AI system is advancing life sciences research.

You’ll read all this and much more in our latest edition of Medical Design & Outsourcing. Enjoy — and thanks for doing your part to lift the medtech industry to new heights.