Boston Scientific reaches into Japan with spinal deal

Boston Scientific has signed a distribution deal to expand its share of the Japanese neuromodulation market.--Courtesy of Boston Scientific

Boston Scientific ($BSX) is looking to expand its share of the Japanese neuromodulation market, signing on with a local devicemaker to sell its Precision Plus spinal cord system in the country.

Under the deal, Fukuda Denshi will market and distribute the neuromodulation device starting April 1, a partnership Boston Scientific says will help it reach far more patients in the world's second-largest market for medical devices.

Fukuda Denshi has well-established sales networks and distribution resources, Boston Scientific Japan President Yusuke Naiki said, and pairing up will help speed up the marketing of Precision Plus.

"Fukuda Denshi has been an established player in Japan for more than 70 years, with a proven track record and a long and successful history of delivering results," Naiki said. "We look forward to a successful relationship."

Precision Plus, part of Boston Scientific's line of implantable spinal cord stimulation devices, delivers pulses of energy to treat chronic pain in the back or limbs. It's already FDA approved, and signing a deal to boost its Japanese sales fits right in with CEO Mike Mahoney's plan to reverse the devicemaker's slumping financial results.

Boston Scientific has long struggled with declining demand for cardiac devices, but Mahoney has said the company will invest in high-growth spaces and on-the-rise regions to bring revenues back to black. And neuromodulation is an ideal target: Last quarter, Boston Scientific posted 14% revenue growth in that business, snagging the second-largest market share in the U.S. Now, with the Fukuda Denshi deal set to kick off, the device giant will look to match that growth internationally.

- read Boston Scientific's announcement