January 25, 2016      

Hansen Medical Inc. sold a Senesi X Robotic System to the Maastricht University Medical Center in the Netherlands through its partner, Medtronic International Trading SARL. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“Maastricht University Medical Center recognizes the impact of advanced robotic treatments for patients and is aligned with our strategic vision,” said Cary Vance, CEO of Hansen Medical. “We anticipate a growing relationship with MUMC as it continues its expansion as a world-class therapeutic and training center.”

Mountain View, Calif.-based Hansen Medical sells technology such as its Magellan systems to facilitate the manipulation and control of intravascular devices and catheters. Like many medical device makers, it has faced ups and downs in recent years, despite increasing demand for healthcare automation.

Sensei uses 3D visualization and control to cardiac treatments, although the company noted that “the safety and effectiveness of this device for use with cardiac ablation catheters, in the treatment of cardiac arrhythmias including atrial fibrillation, have not been established.”

Blue Belt's Navio robotic-assisted drill for knee replacements

Orthopedic surgery companies fuse

Smith & Nephew PLC this month completed its acquisition of Blue Belt Holdings Inc. from HealthpointCapital Partners for $275 million as announced in October 2015. The companies expect Blue Belt’s Navio robot-assisted drill to help with full knee replacements.

Currently, such systems are used only for partial knee replacements. About 120 employees will be joining Smith & Nephew from Blue Belt, which reported 2015 revenue of $19 million.

Stryker Corp. has reportedly expressed interest in Smith & Nephew as the medical device market continues to consolidate.

Stryker previously bought Mako Surgical Corp., which had sued Blue Belt in 2013 for an alleged breach of intellectual property by hiring former sales manager Jeffrey Gellman. Mako Surgical won a permanent injunction against Blue Belt and Gellman.

Pharmacy automation firms finish merger

Similarly, Omnicell Inc. has completed its acquisition of Aesynt Holding Cooperatief U.A. for $275 million. The medication management companies had announced their intention to merge last fall.

Mountain View, Calif.-based Omnicell’s products manage healthcare supply chains, and Cranberry Township, Pa.-based Aesynt provides dispensary robots and software.

Omnicell’s goals for the acquisition include broadening its product portfolio, expanding the presence of its intravenous and logistics systems in hospitals, and accelerating development of enterprise software.

“The addition of Aesynt to the Omnicell family will add distinct capabilities in central pharmacy robotics, IV robotics, automated dispensing systems, and analytics,” said Randall Lipps, founder and CEO of Omnicell. “The strength of our combined offerings will deliver truly scalable innovation to support safe and efficient healthcare.”

Aesynt’s revenue for fiscal 2015 was $190 million. To complete the purchase, Omnicell secured $400 million in credit from Wells Fargo, and it borrowed $255 million as of Jan. 5, 2016.

North America and Europe are the biggest markets for automated dispensing systems, and the global market is expected to experience a compound annual growth rate of 7.43 percent from 2014 to 2019, according to Technavio Reports.

Omnicell’s purchases of Aesynt and U.K.-based Avantec Healthcare Ltd. help it broaden its international reach, but automation and analytics have had “lower-than-expected installations” noted Zacks Equity Research.