Robotic surgery giant Intuitive Surgical (NSDQ:ISRG) said today it inked a joint venture deal with Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical (SHA:600196) to research, develop, manufacture and sell robotic-assisted catheter-based medical devices.
Both companies will contribute $100 million to start the joint venture, which will initially focus on development of early diagnostics and cost-effective treatments for lung cancer, one of the most commonly diagnosed forms of cancer in the world.
“We are excited to deepen our partnership with Fosun Pharma focused on delivering innovative healthcare solutions in China and around the world. We are proud to make this important long-term commitment to China,” Intuitive Surgical CEO Dr. Gary Guthart said in a press release.
Technologies developed through the JV will be used in catheter-based robotic-assisted medical devices and will include incorporated proprietary intellectual property developed or owned by Intuitive Surgical, the companies said.
The JV will be registered in Shanghai, where all R&D and manufacturing will take place. Distribution inside China will be conducted by the JV, while distribution outside the region will be carried out by Intuitive Surgical, the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company said.
“We are pleased to expand our partnership and advance the development of medical tools to enhance the wellbeing of global populations, including those in China that suffer from increased rates of lung cancer. The cooperation will boost the development of Fosun Pharma’s medical device sector by integrating branding concept, matching resources and leveraging complementary advantages with Intuitive Surgical, so as to bring better medical tools for doctors,” Fosun Pharma chairman Chen Qiyu said in a prepared statement.
Fosun Pharma subsidiary Chindex Medical Limited has operated as a distribution partner for Intuitive’s da Vinci systems in China since 2011.
Last month, Intuitive Surgical released data from a study of its da Vinci robotic surgical system used during ventral hernia procedures, touting low rates of conversion, intra-operative complications and 30-day post-operative complications.
Data from the study was recently published in the journal Surgical Endoscopy, Intuitive Surgical said.