J&J to buy surgical robotics company for $3.4bn


J&J to buy surgical robotics company for $3.4bn

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Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has announced plans to strengthen its robotics programme with the addition of Silicon Valley-based Auris Health to its business.

J&J has plans to spend nearly $6 billion on the company, with $3.4 billion in cash upfront and additional contingent payments of up to $2.5 billion.

In a press release published on Wednesday, February 13, J&J said the acquisition will accelerate the company’s entry into robotics.

Robotic technologies developer Auris Health, which is currently focused on lung cancer, was founded in 2007 by Frederic Moll. He will join J&J after the deal is completed.

Moll also founded Intuitive Surgical, a $60 billion robotics company that dominated its market for 20 years but is now facing rivals like Alphabet (Google’s parent company), according to news website Forbes.

Moll said that the Auris Health team would work with J&J to help push the boundaries of what is possible in medical robotics.

“Together, we will be able to dramatically accelerate our collective product innovation to develop new interventional solutions that redefine optimal patient outcomes,” he added.

Auris Health’s first product, the Monarch Platform, received US Food & Drug Administration clearance in March 2018 for diagnostic and therapeutic bronchoscopic procedures.

Buying Auris Health complements J&J’s previous acquisition of French medical technology company Orthotaxy.

In February last year, J&J announced that deal and its plans to broaden the application of Orthotaxy’s robotic-assisted surgery technology, which is currently in early-stage development for knee replacements, to include a range of orthopaedic surgery procedures.

J&J is also working with Verily, the Alphabet life sciences division, to develop the Verb surgical platform, which incorporates robotic capabilities and medical device technology for operating room professionals.

Ashley McEvoy, executive vice president, worldwide chairman, medical devices at J&J, said: “In this new era of health care, we’re aiming to simplify surgery, drive efficiency, reduce complications and improve outcomes for patients, ultimately making surgery safer.”

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Johnson & Johnson, J&J, mergers & acquisitions, M&A, robotics, technology, lung cancer, surgical robotics, surgery, medical technology