European medical technology sector weathering storm but expecting
8 June 2009
A recent survey of medical technology manufacturers across Europe has
found that the recession was having a significant negative impact on
only 20% of the companies.
The survey was conducted by the European medical technology business
association, Eucomed, of 100 top executives of European companies.
The vast majority of he companies are nevertheless anticipating
tougher times due to the downturn and restructuring of healthcare
systems. Over 80% of respondents agree that hospitals are struggling
financially, price pressure is increasing, and tendering and contracting
conditions have worsened.
Many executives said they have already started preparations to keep
solvent, with half indicating they 'feel well prepared'. Meanwhile,
two-thirds are controlling costs by making redundancies or introducing
Overall, the outlook is one of optimism. While the majority of
respondents said that investments have remained the same or have only
been moderately reduced, approximately one-third say new business
investment has actually increased.
Furthermore, some 40% of executives identified pockets of growth for
existing products and stated that they are confident about continued
product launches over the next five years. Finally, most see attractive
opportunities in mergers and acquisitions, and business development.
According to John Wilkinson, Chief Executive of Eucomed, "The outlook
for the medical technology industry remains relatively promising. It is,
however, clear that the industry is bracing itself for the potential
effects of the financial crisis to work through the system.
"In these times of financial uncertainty, it is to be hoped that the
industry's customers see innovation as a key mechanism for responding to
the pressures. The industry certainly has much to offer and appears
committed to continue investment in research and development."
Bolstered by the initiatives undertaken to face a tougher
environment, executives at medical product companies across Europe view
the growth prospects of their companies positively. More than 50% expect
over 5% growth for 2009 with two-thirds expecting more than 5% growth
It appears that at least for now in European medical technology
industry, the focus is on the future and on ensuring that businesses can
develop and deliver medical products for the years to come.
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