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What is driving M&A in the medical devices market in 2023?



Executive Summary


Several factors are driving mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the medical devices market in 2023. Here are some key drivers:

  1. Market Consolidation: The medical devices market is highly fragmented, with numerous companies operating in various segments. M&A activity often aims to consolidate market share and create larger entities with increased capabilities, broader product portfolios, and enhanced competitiveness. By merging or acquiring other companies, organizations can achieve economies of scale, streamline operations, and gain a stronger market position.

  2. Technological Advancements: The medical devices industry is rapidly evolving, driven by advancements in technology, such as robotics, artificial intelligence, miniaturization, and connectivity. Companies often seek to acquire or merge with innovative firms that possess cutting-edge technologies or intellectual property, enabling them to stay ahead in a highly competitive market.

  3. Access to New Markets: M&A can provide companies with access to new geographic regions or untapped markets. By acquiring a company with an established presence in a particular market, organizations can expand their global reach, penetrate new customer segments, and capitalize on emerging healthcare needs and opportunities.

  4. Diversification of Product Portfolio: M&A allows companies to diversify their product offerings and enter new therapeutic areas or segments of the medical devices market. By acquiring companies with complementary products or technologies, organizations can expand their capabilities and address a broader range of healthcare needs, thus reducing reliance on a single product or market segment.

  5. Cost Synergies and Operational Efficiencies: M&A transactions often aim to achieve cost synergies and operational efficiencies by eliminating duplicative functions, consolidating manufacturing and distribution processes, and leveraging shared resources. These synergies can result in cost savings, improved productivity, and increased profitability.

  6. Regulatory and Reimbursement Pressures: The medical devices industry is subject to stringent regulatory requirements and reimbursement challenges. M&A can provide companies with the necessary resources and expertise to navigate complex regulatory landscapes, comply with evolving regulations, and negotiate favorable reimbursement terms with healthcare payers.

  7. Strategic Partnerships and Collaborations: M&A is not the only form of collaboration in the medical devices market. Strategic partnerships, joint ventures, and licensing agreements are also common. Companies may choose these options to leverage each other's strengths, combine resources, and accelerate innovation or market penetration without going through a full acquisition process.

Intro to the Medical Device market


The medical device market refers to the industry that encompasses the development, manufacturing, and distribution of medical devices. Medical devices are instruments, apparatuses, machines, implants, or similar articles that are used to diagnose, prevent, monitor, treat, or alleviate medical conditions.

The medical device market is diverse and encompasses a wide range of products, including:

  1. Diagnostic devices: These include imaging equipment (such as X-ray machines, MRI scanners, and ultrasound devices), diagnostic laboratory equipment, point-of-care testing devices, and other devices used for diagnosing medical conditions.

  2. Therapeutic devices: These devices are used to treat or manage medical conditions, including surgical instruments, implantable devices (such as pacemakers and artificial joints), infusion pumps, respiratory devices, and more.

  3. Monitoring devices: These devices are used to monitor various physiological parameters of patients, such as blood pressure monitors, glucose meters, cardiac monitors, and wearable devices.

  4. Surgical instruments: These instruments are used by surgeons and healthcare professionals during surgical procedures, including scalpels, forceps, retractors, and sutures.

  5. Home healthcare devices: These devices are designed for use by patients at home to manage their health conditions, including glucose monitoring systems, home dialysis machines, and portable oxygen concentrators.

The medical device market is driven by several factors, including:

  1. Aging population: As the global population ages, there is an increased demand for medical devices to diagnose and treat age-related conditions.

  2. Technological advancements: Advances in technology, such as miniaturization, wireless connectivity, and improved materials, drive innovation in the medical device market, leading to more sophisticated and effective devices.

  3. Chronic disease prevalence: The rising prevalence of chronic diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and respiratory disorders, increases the demand for medical devices for disease management and monitoring.

  4. Healthcare infrastructure: The level of healthcare infrastructure and access to medical services in a region influence the demand for medical devices.

  5. Regulatory environment: Stringent regulations and standards govern the development, manufacturing, and distribution of medical devices to ensure safety and efficacy. Compliance with these regulations is crucial for market entry and growth.

The medical device market is highly competitive, with numerous global and regional players.


Key market participants include multinational corporations, small and medium-sized enterprises, and startups.


The market is characterized by ongoing research and development activities, partnerships, and mergers and acquisitions, as companies strive to innovate and expand their product offerings.



What is driving M&A in the medical devices market in 2023?

  1. Market expansion: medical device companies are acquiring companies to provide access to new markets or geographies where they have limited or no presence. The main driver is to expand customer bases and increase market share.

  2. Product portfolio enhancement: medical device companies are acquiring companies for new product lines or technologies. This enables them to diversify their product portfolio, offer a broader range of solutions to customers, and stay competitive in a rapidly evolving market.

  3. Cost synergies: M&A can result in cost savings through economies of scale. By combining operations, medical device companies can eliminate duplicate functions, streamline manufacturing processes and reduce overhead costs. The main driver is to improve profitability.

  4. Access to talent and expertise: Merging with or acquiring a company can provide access to skilled professionals, research and development capabilities, and specialized expertise. This can accelerate product development and innovation for medical device companies, leading to a competitive advantage in the market.

  5. Competitive advantage: M&A activities can help medical device companies gain a competitive edge by acquiring technologies or intellectual property that differentiate their products from competitors. The main driver is to offer unique solutions, attract more customers, and increase market share.

  6. Consolidation of fragmented markets: The medical device industry is often characterized by numerous small and medium-sized companies. M&A can help consolidate the market by bringing together smaller players, leading to larger, more robust companies that can better compete with larger industry leaders.

History of bulge bracket medical device M&A


The medical devices market has witnessed several mergers and acquisitions (M&A) over the years. Some of the most notable M&A deals that have occurred in the medical devices industry are:

  1. Medtronic's acquisition of Covidien: In January 2015, Medtronic, a leading medical technology company, acquired Covidien, an Irish-based medical device manufacturer, in a deal worth approximately $49.9 billion. This merger aimed to create a broader and more diversified product portfolio in medical devices and therapies.

  2. Abbott's acquisition of St. Jude Medical: In January 2017, Abbott, a global healthcare company, completed its acquisition of St. Jude Medical, a medical device company specializing in cardiovascular and implantable neurostimulation technologies. The deal was valued at approximately $25 billion and strengthened Abbott's presence in the cardiovascular devices market.

  3. Johnson & Johnson's acquisition of Synthes: In June 2012, Johnson & Johnson, a multinational healthcare company, acquired Synthes, a Swiss-based manufacturer of orthopedic implants and surgical instruments, for approximately $19.7 billion. This acquisition enhanced Johnson & Johnson's orthopedics business segment.

  4. Stryker's acquisition of Boston Scientific's Neurovascular Division: In October 2010, Stryker Corporation, a medical technology company, acquired the Neurovascular division of Boston Scientific Corporation for approximately $1.5 billion. This deal expanded Stryker's presence in the neurovascular market and complemented its existing portfolio of medical devices.

  5. Zimmer Biomet's acquisition of Biomet: In June 2015, Zimmer Holdings and Biomet Inc. completed their merger, forming Zimmer Biomet Holdings, one of the largest medical device companies specializing in musculoskeletal healthcare. The transaction was valued at approximately $13.4 billion.

It's important to note that M&A activities in the medical device industry are subject to regulatory scrutiny, particularly in cases where the merger or acquisition could potentially reduce competition or create a monopoly.


Regulatory bodies, such as antitrust authorities, review these transactions to ensure they do not harm consumers or impede market competition.


Thoughts, comments? Tweet @lloydgprice, or email lloyd@healthcare.digital and let's start a conversation :)


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