California's got the funds, but Minnesota's got the innovation — 6 insights into a medical device industry revival

MedicalDesign & Outsourcing took a deep dive into the Minnesota medical device development scene to examine what some consider the next hotbed of medical device development.

Here's what you should know.

1. The times are changing for Minnesota medical device developers and manufacturers. Gone are the days where production centered on traditional medical devices like pacemakers and heart valves. In their place are startups focused on filling niche markets.

2. However, as healthcare transitions towards value-based care, even device makers will have to innovate. California medical device startups dwarfed Minnesota startups, raking in $1.5 billion in 2017 funding to Minnesota's $220 million.

3. Still investment in Minnesota is growing. The growth is evident when looking at the first three months of 2018, during which time Minnesota companies closed 26 deals raising $112 million.

4. Though cash flow is lagging behind the level of innovation, Minnesota's Medical Alley was among the most innovative when it was first established in the 1950s and 1960s. Investors eventually went to California, but Minnesota's burgeoning medical industry will continue to evolve over time.

5. One way the evolution will take place is through the replacement of traditional investors. Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic and large medical device companies are funneling money to the startups and offering them resources and support.

6. Restoring Minnesota to its ground-breaking past will take time. The innovation and infrastructure are still there, and the money is arriving. As Randy Nelson, CEO of Evergreen Medical Technologies, said to MedicalDesign & Outsourcing, "Minnesota feels like a medical device neighborhood."

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