5 of the Best Performing Medical Device Firms of 2013

Posted in Medical Device Business by Brian Buntz on December 18, 2013

Despite significant headwinds, several medtech companies flourished in the past year while several stumbled. Here are five of the most successful:

DexCom, a glucose monitoring specialist, has seen the value of its stock nearly triple in the past year. On December 19, 2012, it was valued at $13.59 per share. On December 18, 2013, the stock was valued at $34.34.

The company's CEO, Terry Gregg, expects the growth trend to continue, based on strong patient acceptance levels it has seen for its products this year, and the strength of its new G4 Platinum. It is "the most accurate sensor in the world," and the most durable and easy to use, according to Gregg.

Contributing to the company's bottom line is an uptick in diabetes levels in the United States and internationally. In fact, the U.S. diabetes market could be worth as much as $17.8 billion by 2018.

Royal Philips debuted the first digital CT/PET-scan system early this month. The healthcare giant has demonstrated its penchant for innovation with several other breakthroughs, which has given it upper hand against rivals Siemens and GE.

The company is even experimenting with the use of Google Glass in operating rooms.

Nuvasive is another company that saw extremely strong growth in 2013. Its stock has roughly doubled in the past year, from around $15 per share in late 2012 to $32.21 on December 18, 2013. The company had significant success recently in expanding its minimally invasive spinal devices. Also boding well for the firm is the fact that the spinal surgery device market overall is faring well, and is projected to be worth $8.7 billion by 2018. That market was valued at $6.5 billion in 2011.

The company was ranked as one of the fastest growing technology firms in 2013 based in North America by Deloitte.

Globus Medical, which develops technology to treat spine disorders, had a banner year in 2013. Its stock was trading at about $11 per share a year ago. As of December 18, it was up to $19.70.

The company has developed a portfolio of roughly 100 fusion products to treat various spinal problems.

Boston Scientific's CEO Michael F. Mahoney nearly a year ago stressed that the company was back on the right track. Mahoney—who made the upbeat prediction at the J.P. Morgan healthcare conference held in San Francisco in January—helms a company that witnessed significant executive turnover in recent years, but he stressed that he was committed to the company and optimistic about its potential.

If the company's financial performance in 2013 is any indication, he just might be right. Boston Scientific's stock is now trading at around $11.50—a level the company hadn't seen since the best days of 2009. Incidentally, the third quarter of 2009 was the last time the company had organic sales growth quarter since until the second quarter of this year. The years 2010 through 2012 were relatively weak for the company. Its stock at one point had fallen to roughly $5.00.

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5 of the Worst Performing Medical Device Firms of 2013