Medtronic to expand spinal robotic capabilities after record 3rd-quarter sales

Laura Dyrda -   Print  |

Medtronic Chair and CEO Geoff Martha was optimistic about sales of its spine surgery robot increasing in the coming year during the company's Feb. 23 third-quarter conference call, as transcribed by The Motley Fool.


The company reported a record number of Mazor robotic systems sold in the third quarter and near record numbers for the O-arm imaging and StealthStation navigation systems. Medtronic did not report the exact number of units sold.

"With Mazor, we estimate that we will continue to meaningfully outsell our nearest competitor, Globus [Medical], in the spine robotics space," said Mr. Martha.

He also said the company is expanding Mazor's capabilities and investing heavily in growth for the robotics business unit. However, analysts on the call questioned whether hospitals would continue to budget for capital spend on robotic technology amid pandemic-induced financial constraints.

Mr. Martha responded that elective procedures, such as spine surgeries, have high profit margins for hospitals, and the robotic equipment has a high value proposition. He also said he expects patient volume to return to normal in the coming months.

Brett Wall, Medtronic executive vice president and president of its neuroscience portfolio, said capital markets remain strong.

"The hospital CEOs and others are really preparing for [the return of elective procedures] and then upgrading their existing fleets of navigation and then imaging," he said. "We think that portends well for the future here as we get through this time period and the resurgence of cases commences."

More articles on spine surgery:
Motion preservation will become the standard, but won't eliminate fusion: 8 surgeons weigh in
Dr. Ali Mesiwala joins Disc Sports & Spine Center
4 hospitals, health systems expanding spine services in January


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