Wright Medical's back on track, eager to close BioMimetic buyout

January 8, 2013 by Arezu Sarvestani

Orthopedic medical device maker Wright Medical's company-wide overhaul is on or ahead of schedule in most areas, and the company is looking forward to closing the $390 million buyout of BioMimetic Therapeutics.

Wright Medical Group logo

Orthopedic giant Wright Medical (NSDQ:WMGI) is back on track, CEO Robert Palmisano told an audience at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare conference in San Francisco yesterday.

Following a rough patch, which included a deferred prosecution agreement over allegations that the company engaged in illegal kickbacks for hip and knee devices, Wright is looking to turn things around.

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"In 2012 we began executing a transformational plan with the core focus of accelerating growth and improving our overall performance," Palmisano said yesterday. "We set out some pretty aggressive targets that we think we have actually surpassed."

The company set new benchmarks for progress in reforming its sales force, increasing physician training and spurring growth in its foot & ankle business.

Palmisano reported that Wright had already managed to convert 80% of its foot & ankle sales force to direct sales, 50% more than before.

"As we go forward, we did not think that we would be able to target the growth opportunity that is out there in foot & ankle if we did not get more control over our distribution channel," Palmisano said. "This was a big bet and I think it's working out extremely well, and we couldn't be happier."