PE firm buys majority stake in spinal surgery startup, adds ex-Stryker exec to board

Kohlberg & Company has acquired a majority stake in spinal surgery startup Amendia. The private equity firm has expanded the executive and board roster of the Marietta, GA-based company, including the addition of former Stryker ($SYK) CMO and CSO Scott Bruder to the board, who is a Kohlberg adviser.

The financial details of the transaction remained undisclosed, but Kohlberg said it would support Amendia out of its $1.6 billion fund, Kohlberg Investors VII.

"Amendia has carefully and steadily grown organically and through thoughtful M&A to become one of the premier growth companies offering a complete suite of products that meet the needs of surgeons and their patients," said Amendia COO Chris Fair in a statement. "I look forward to helping the company expand its footprint, add resources, and build value for all customers and partners."

Amendia COO Chris Fair

Fair, who was previously at DePuy Spine, a Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) company, worked alongside Bruder when the latter was a Worldwide Vice President at DePuy. Both are among the three new executives that Kohlberg is adding to Amendia. In addition to Fair and Bruder, Larry Boyd has joined as EVP of R&D.

"We see tremendous growth opportunities for Amendia," said Kohlberg partner Chris Anderson. "Through its broad portfolio of innovative products and intellectual property, scalable operational infrastructure, and continued dedication to its mission to exceed surgeon and patient expectations, Amendia is uniquely positioned to serve the growing demands of the spinal surgery marketplace in the U.S. and beyond."

Kohlberg typically confines its healthcare investment to healthcare services, so the investment in Amendia is somewhat of a departure for the firm. It also invests in industrial, consumer services, financial services, business services and consumer products companies--with a particular interest in companies that already have existing revenues.

Amendia has a wide range of spinal surgery products including cervical interbody, cervical fixation and lumbar interbody implants as well as screws, biologics and instrumentation. It's focused on a vertically integrated strategy for spinal disorder patients.

"Kohlberg & Company's reputation of investment success along with a track record of fostering world-class operational performance makes them the ideal partner to help implement our plans for strategic growth," summed up Amendia founder and CEO Jeff Smith.

Founded in 2008, Amendia has raised less than $5 million in venture capital, according to SEC filings.

- here is the announcement