Guidant buys X-Technologies for $200M
Monday, March 10, 2003
 
Guidant (NYSE:GDT) has acquired Israeli medical devices company X-Technologies for $200 million in cash.

X-Technologies has developed a proprietary angioplasty catheter, based on technology that opens blockages, while minimizing damage to healthy arterial tissue. So far as is known, X-Technologies was negotiating with several companies about an acquisition since February 2002; however the successful negotiations with Guidant took less than six months.

X-Technologies president and CEO Guy Shinar declined to confirm or deny the report.

X-Technologies first developed treatments for restenosis (renewed narrowing or blocking of arteries at the same place as an earlier treatment). The company developed an x-ray catheter that is inserted into the coronary arteries following catheterization to prevent renew plaque buildup, which occurs in 35% of cases. The original technology can treat especially severe blockages, while reducing complications during angioplasty. The company already has sales in Europe.

X-Technologies reportedly switched from this technology to a different method bought from a US company, called “Cutting balloon” technology. This technology uses a balloon inserted into the artery to dilate it, while exuding rail wire that clears the accumulated plaque. Guidant’s interest in X-Technologies is due to this device.

X-Technologies’ catheter opens coronary arterial blockages with minimal vascular trauma, Concentrated stress creates controlled plaque fractures at low inflation pressures. The catheter has a Pull Wire that aids in tracking tortuous vessels while the Steerable Guide Wire helps anchor the catheter in the lesion. This platform’s dual wires are completely external to the balloon and work together to dilate most lesion types.

Guidant, one of the largest cardiovascular medical device companies, lost its position in the drug-coated stent market after its stent failed in clinical trials. Johnson and Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) and Boston Scientific (NYSE:BSX) threatened Guidant’s position in the market.

X-Technologies’ catheter is comparable to existing cutting balloons developed by Boston Scientific. Last year, Boston Scientific acquired US start-up Interventional Technologies, a developer of cutting balloons, for $345 million in cash.

Founded in 1994, Indianapolis-based Guidant has annual revenue of $2.7 billion and 10,000 employees.

A group of US and Israeli private entrepreneurs, Dr. Shmuel Bukshpan, Dr. Uri Halavi, and the Lewis C. Pell group, founded X-Technologies in 1999. The company closed a $12 million financing round at $35 million company value, after money, in late 2001. Yozma Venture Capital, Challenge Fund - Etgar, Giza Group, Trefoil Capital Investors, ABS and private investors participated. The company is headquartered in California and has offices in New York State and a development center in Rehovot. Most of its 24 employees are in the US.

 
 

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