Mazor Robotics (NSDQ:MZOR) today unveiled its Mazor X robotic spinal surgery system, designed to combine analytical tools, precision guidance, optical tracking and intra-operative verification into a single, spinal surgical aid system.
The Mazor X is slated to launch during the North American Spine Society’s annual meeting in Boston in October, the Israeli company said.
“What we will now become is much more comprehensive in spinal surgery. We now have a surgical assurance platform that can handle many more tasks in spinal procedures. It’s a bright day for the company,” U.S. biz CEO Cristopher Prentice told MassDevice.com in an interview.
The release is a major step for Mazor, Prentice said, with the new system integrating years of effort from the company, including changes based on regular customer and user feedback that resulted in a much more versatile system.
“We’re very excited about the partnership with Medtronic. Up to this point we’ve had to do all levels of awareness, all levels off demand generation in order to get to the point where we could propose and get systems into hospitals. Now we’ve come to a partner who’s a global spine leader that has a sales force in the hundreds or thousands, already in the hospitals with the spinal surgeons with deep relationships. So in a mass and scale standpoint, we just went into hyperdrive,” Prentice said in an interview.
The newly unveiled system combines a suite of pre-operative analytics software designed to assess spinal alignment and implement full surgical planning, including fully computerized alignment calculations, along with intra-operative guidance.
Guidance is provided through a bed-attached, bone-mounted surgical arm designed to guide tools and synergistic implants according to the pre-operative analytics program, the company said.
“It’s a great day for Mazor. It’s a day of validation of our efforts, our enthusiasm. Our innovation engine is still thriving, and with this partner to help us with the promotional, sales and marketing efforts, we can do what we do best, which is innovation, allowing our R&D to work on other applications, even outside of spinal,” Prentice said.
The company originally inked the deal with the Fridley, Minn.-based medical giant in May, signing a 2-phase deal for Mazor’s robot-assisted spine surgery technology that includes a co-promotion agreement and an equity investment that could see Medtronic wind up with a 15% stake in the company for as much as $42 million.
Caesarea, Israel-based Mazor said the 1st phase of the deal calls for Medtronic to acquire 15 Mazor systems this year. It also makes Medtronic Mazor’s sole partner for developing and commercializing robot-assisted spine surgery devices; if both meet their milestones by the endof 2017, the deal is slated to progress to the 2nd phase. Mazor said its already working with Fridley, Minn.-based Medtronic on the development of “synergistic” spine products “and will begin working closely together to meet designated sales targets through a defined methodology for cooperation.”
The 2nd phase involves a 3-step equity investment by Medtronic, in which the world’s largest pure-play medtech maker would 1st pay $12 million for a 4% stake in Mazor. The 2nd tranche, triggered by Mazor achieving operational milestones, would see Medtronic acquire a 6% stake at the 20-day average share price for MZOR stock. In the 3rd tranche, triggered by the 2nd tranche and the execution of a global distribution agreement – but executed at Mazor’s discretion – Medtronic would buy another 5% stake, again at the 20-day MZOR average. Mazor said Medtronic can cap the 2nd and 3rd tranches at $20 million apiece.
“Mazor X is the culmination of a multi-year development effort to proactively address our target market, surgeon and patient needs for today’s reimbursement environment, by applying multi-disciplinary principles to achieve a surgical assurance platform. Our pioneering experience in guidance technology, which has been used by hundreds of surgeons to place over 100,000 guided spine implants, has been leveraged in the development of the Mazor X system. The Mazor X platform expands the field of spine surgery from trajectory guidance to assisting surgeons with a total patient treatment strategy. Following our recently formed partnership with Medtronic and the increased market access it provides us, the launch of the Mazor X positions us for accelerated growth and long term leadership in the spine market,” CEO Ori Hadomi said in a press release.