Covidien unveils $45M Chinese R&D center

Covidien ($COV) came through on its promise to build a new R&D center in China, opening its $45 million, 100,000-square-foot facility in Shanghai.

The new building will house two arms of Covidien's R&D department: products tailored for emerging markets and breakthrough device platforms. Also included are what the company calls "laboratory and operating theatre simulation suites," or areas that allow healthcare professionals to get involved in the design and development of new medical devices.

Collaborating with local talent is key to the center's success, Covidien Vice President Dong Wu said in a statement, and the company plans to use the center as way to develop Chinese talent and groom future devicemakers.

And the Chinese government is on board, too. Wang Xin Pei, the deputy director of Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce, attended the facility's opening ceremony and said the government has implemented policies designed to bolster the device industry, "and the key word is innovation."

Covidien is hardly the only devicemaker looking to China for R&D expansion. In May, GE Healthcare ($GE) opened an $80 million facility in Chengdu, and Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ), St. Jude Medical ($STJ) and Medtronic ($MDT) have all build R&D shops in the country over the past couple years.

- read Covidien's statement
- check out FierceBiotech's take

Special Report: Covidien - Top 10 Medical Device R&D Budgets