Six months after a significant management change, Zimmer officials claim the orthopedics leader is back on track. But in today's environment, can even a successful orthopedics company please its drug-company parent?
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Since becoming CEO of orthopedics giant Zimmer two years ago, David Dvorak has faced a host of challenges unprecedented in this booming market, including a federal investigation into and settlement of questionable relationships with customers and the most severe economic crisis in 30 years. But Dvorak seems calm and confident as he looks ahead.
Once the very model of stability among orthopedics companies, Biomet went through a rocky period a while ago as its stock price tanked and its long time CEO left the company. To the rescue has come a group of private equity investors who will take the company private when the transaction closes later this year. Biomet officials insist the company's turnaround will be based on the same success factors that made the company successful in the past: product innovation, strong distributor relationships, and close customer ties. But the question is: what changes, if any, will Biomet's new owners bring?
Across a wide range of specialties, the unique features of minimally invasive surgery provides a consistent array of beneifts to patients, and orthopedic surgeons have worked hard over the past several years to reduce the size of incisions in hip and knee replacement. Skeptics argue that, given the extremely high success rates of conventional hip and knee replacement surgery, any movement toward MIS should be slow and should look beyond patient appeal to focus on long-term results. For MIS leader Zimmer, the bet on the new technique is a big one. The widespread adoption of MIS in orthopedics is less about the transformation of a procedure than about the transformation of a company and an industry.