The top 10 med tech M&A deals of 2013

Forget organic growth. In 2013, some of the biggest moves into new or expanded markets in the med tech world came through serious M&A activity.

The top deals announced or closed in 2013 created supergiants in the diagnostics and renal device spaces for the first time. One transaction helped a major device player expand its orthopedic device offerings. Another $1.1 billion purchase helped a pharmaceutical giant become a major maker of a birth control device implant in one fell swoop. Another international med tech player, always on the lookout for new business lines, snatched up a buzz-worthy maker of an endoscopic pill camera in a deal announced at the end of 2013 that just closed in February, gaining new revenue possibilities through a smart acquisition.

A med tech company scores on our list twice. One of its two major M&A transactions instantly gave it a significant manufacturing and distribution presence in China--a crucial emerging market for med tech companies far and wide. Still another device outfit bought up a company that produced a cutting edge-technology in the pacemaker space, instantly leapfrogging ahead of its two larger rivals in the development race.

M&A transactions can help all sides involved in the deal. They give investors in smaller, private companies an exit strategy. If the buyer is a larger rival, the acquired company can gain a much broader market through new management and sales resources, gaining opportunities for revenue growth not possible if it stayed independent. The combined might of two competitors can also help solidify a market. But the downside, of course, is reduced competition, which is never good for consumers.

We've listed 10 deals in all--growth through acquisition that helped med tech companies adjust to a global healthcare market that increasingly rewards scale, size and consolidation-driven cost-effectiveness.

Take a look at our roundup. We tried to pick deals--again, announced or closed in 2013--set to have real impact on the med tech world in the months ahead. Let us know what you think, and thanks for reading.

-- Mark Hollmer (email | Twitter)
Senior Editor, FierceMedicalDevices | FierceDiagnostics

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