Goldman Sachs sinks $20M into India devicemaker

Goldman Sachs is the latest multinational to see promise in India's surging medical tech industry. The global investment bank invested about $20 million in BPL Medical Technologies to help the medical device and instrument company's expansion plans.

The Times of India and VC Circle are among the media outlets that picked up on the news, which comes as Medtronic ($MDT), CardioDx and a number of other device and diagnostics companies around the world have turned to India to expand. It's not without risks, of course, considering, for example, that regulators have worked hard in recent months to slash reimbursement rates for stents--a big hit to multinational stentmakers trying to grow their business there. But that makes investment in India's homegrown companies all the more important, considering the relative favoritism they face. And so this is a logical area in which Goldman Sachs is pursuing opportunity.

"This investment reflects our continued focus on the Indian healthcare sector where we will continue to fund segments that have a great need and large untapped potential," Ankur Sahu, Goldman Sachs' co-leader of Asia private equity investment, is quoted as saying in both stories.

So what is Goldman Sachs getting for the money? BPL Medical began in 1963 and makes everything from electrocardiographs to defibrillators, fetal monitors, X-ray machines and many other devices and related equipment, VC Circle notes. And plans call for using the money to expand the company's product range and also its global sales footprint. Here comes another low-cost competitor in other emerging markets and beyond.

And Goldman Sachs is not alone among investment banks who are turning to India's medical device industry. As VC Circle notes, TPG Capital recently invested in Sutures India, which manufactures various surgical consumable products. Considering the relatively stagnant device market in the West, more emerging market med tech investment will likely follow.

- read the Times of India story
- here's VC Circle's take