Ethicon Buys Acclarent: Can This Exit Open Up ENT?
Traditionally, the ENT space has been a bit of a technology backwater in terms of device innovation. Indeed, it has been more than a decade since the last major ENT deal, which made Medtronic the sole major strategic player in the ENT space. That dynamic has now changed with J&J/Ethicon's acquisition of Acclarent. Now the question is whether this deal will help open up the ENT space to more M&A activity?
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The ear, nose, and throat market now boasts several large device manufacturers that see possibilities in this space for innovative new minimally invasive products. Such competition is the ideal landscape for innovation, as the large companies battle for market share, while start-up firms and VCs see opportunities to take the market in new directions.
Competition breeds innovation, and the ear, nose, and throat (ENT) market, once a fairly quiet arena, is now positioned to host some spirited activity that should lead to new technologies. Several large device manufacturers have recently moved into the ENT space, and the sinus treatment segment of the market has become one of the focal points for emerging competitors, as companies work toward less-invasive treatment options.
The second company in the US looking to replace certain sinus surgeries with interventional procedures, Entellus is looking to further advance this technology by moving treatment from the OR to the doctor's office.