Contract manufacturers fuel medtech expansion in Costa Rica

Medical device manufacturing is flourishing in the Central American country, spurred by a host of incentives.

[Image from Unsplash]This year is seeing a wave of expansions by medtech contract manufacturers in Costa Rica.

Medtech OEMs have made the Central American company a manufacturing hub since the 1990s. Major companies operating there include Abbott, Bayer, Boston Scientific, Cardinal Health, Edwards Lifesciences, Hologic, Medtronic, Philips, Smith+Nephew and Wright Medical. Eight of these are among the top 20 exporters in Costa Rica, representing nearly $2.7 million in medical device exports in 2019 — 73% of the total.

Medtech OEMs in Costa Rica want their suppliers nearby, making the Central American country a magnet for contract manufacturers. The addition of medtech sterilization facilities in Costa Rica — BeamOne (now Steris) in 2009 and Sterigenics in 2013 — also helped spur more contract manufacturing. Before that, manufacturers had to ship prod…

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SMC is expanding its Costa Rica facility

SMC (Somerset, Wis.) recently announced that it will double the size of its Alajuela, Costa Rica facility to 120,000 ft2 this year.

The additional space will enable SMC Costa Rica to provide increased contract manufacturing solutions, including assembly, injection molding and secondary operations. SMC plans to double the number of workers it has in the Central American country; it presently has 200 workers in Costa Rica.

“SMC has seen tremendous growth in Costa Rica, both in technological capabilities and our people development,” SMC VP Bob Stoesser said in an April 5 news release.

“This is our third expansion in 10 years and shows our commitment to Costa Rica, its people, and community,” Stoesser said. “Our growth and success are directly attributable to our SMC team members, as well as the loyalty and confidence our customers have placed on us. We are well-positioned to continue our growth path in Costa Rica and our technical manufacturing …

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