• by bcarlson@marketresearch.com
  • January 20 2016


No Concern for Device Industry Seen in J&J Restructuring

No Concern for Device Industry Seen in J&J Restructuring

The recent medical device-related layoffs at Johnson & Johnson is an impactful decision for the company and on its employees.  But it does not signal any downturn in the medical device market, as the New Brunswick, N.J. - based device giant has been selling off parts of its devices business in recent years, and J&J’s declines should reflect increases in other companies.  The global market for medical devices was $370 billion dollars in 2015, and is expected to grow at 3% average growth per year, according to Kalorama’s most recent report, The Global Market for Medical Devices, 6th Edition. http://www.kaloramainformation.com/Global-Medical-Devices-8983360/.

Johnson & Johnson said Tuesday that it plans to cut two percent of its workforce, about 3,000 jobs over the next two years as the health care conglomerate works to restructure its medical devices business.  J&J said this was 4 percent to 6 percent of its employee total in medical devices. 

The device market overall is growing at a stable if modest rate.   Slower than a decade ago, but still at a rate that many competitors can operate in.  This announcement says more about J&J as a company and where it strategically wants to go, than about the device industry. Last year, Kalorama estimates that Medtronic overtook Johnson and Johnson as the number one medical device company due to that firm’s merger with Covidien.   Johnson & Johnson had been prioritizing its consumer and pharmaceutical divisions in recent years.    The sale of its Ortho Clinical unit to the Carlyle Group and Cordis unit to Cardinal Health reduced the size of its medical device division, though both units operate as part of the other companies.   

The restructuring is aimed at J&J’s orthopedics, surgery and cardiovascular businesses, according to reports.   J&J’s DePuy Synthes is the world’s largest orthopedic device company, but the unit has struggled due to cost controls applied to implant products.   Kalorama’s recent report on orthopedic devices said the U.S. market would grow just 1.3% between 2014 and 2019.  While J&J is set to report last year’s results in a few days, it was widely anticipated that current device sales were underperforming. Vision Care and Ethicon biological wound care products are among devices in its umbrella performing well.  It’s large cash position also means it could buy another better-performing device unit and there’s media speculation to that effect.

Kalorama Information’s  The Global Market for Medical Devices, 6th Edition reviews top companies and their revenue, growth, R&D spending and other factors.  It provides market size estimates for many individual device markets.  The report can be found at: http://www.kaloramainformation.com/Global-Medical-Devices-8983360/.