When the leg bone and the knee bone don't connect so well anymore, Biomet may have a solution. Orthopedic specialists use the medical devices made by Biomet, whose wares include reconstructive products (hips, knees, and shoulders), dental implants, bone cement systems, orthopedic support devices, and operating-room supplies. Through Biomet Trauma and other units, the firm also sells fixation devices (bone screws and pins), electrical bone-growth stimulators, and bone grafting materials. Subsidiary Biomet Microfixation markets implants and bone substitute material for craniomaxillofacial (head and face) surgeries. Biomet is controlled by LVB Acquisition, which is owned by a group of private equity firms.
The US is Biomet's biggest market, accounting for about 60% of sales. The second-largest market, Europe, accounts for 25%. The company distributes its products in some 90 countries worldwide, but it is still looking to expand its geographical presence, particularly in Asia and Latin America. Biomet operates from about 50 facility locations around the globe.
Biomet rearranged its operating segments in 2012. Following the shuffle, the large joint reconstructive devices segment (hip and knee replacement systems and related supplies) accounted for about 60% of Biomet's revenues that year. The other revamped segments -- sports, extremities, and trauma (SET); spine and bone healing; dental; and other products -- each accounted for about 10% of sales.
Sales and Marketing
Products are marketed to hospitals (Biomet supplies its products to more than 60% of hospitals that perform joint replacement surgeries), surgeon practices, and other medical facilities through direct and commissioned sales representatives, as well as through wholesale distributors. Biomet works to build relationships with surgeons by conducting training and customer satisfaction initiatives.
Biomet's revenues increased 4% in 2012 to some $2.8 billion, primarily due to a 13% rise in sales of products within the SET segment including the JuggerKnot SoftAnchor. Product sales in the core segment -- large joint reconstruction -- also increased by 4% in 2012. Net losses continued for Biomet that year, however, as the company took asset impairment charges on its spine and bone healing and dental reconstruction segments due to decreased product sales within those businesses. Though losses in 2012 weren't as deep as those recorded in fiscal 2011, Biomet has been struggling with a lack of profitability for several years, despite its steadily rising revenues.
In addition to restructuring its operating segments, in recent years Biomet has revamped its R&D organization to prioritize and focus its portfolio on those products that will most likely help generate revenue. Core R&D areas include orthopedic reconstruction, spinal fixation, sports medicine products, craniomaxillofacial implant technologies, autologous (plasma) therapy supplies, and biomaterials. Biomet is also working to expand product sales in emerging markets, such as select Asian and Latin American countries, where demand for musculoskeletal products is increasing.
In other restructuring measures, the company is looking to streamline its manufacturing organization. As it evaluates opportunities to improve operational efficiencies, in mid-2012 Biomet announced that it is considering the separation of its Biomet 3i dental business, which is experiencing lagging sales in the European market.
Mergers and Acquisitions
In 2012 Biomet acquired the trauma business of Depuy Orthopaedics (part of Johnson & Johnson's Depuy division) for some $280 million. The purchase expanded Biomet's global trauma offerings, including screws, nails, pins, plating systems, and external fixation systems. It also strengthened future growth opportunities within its SET business segment.
Biomet is owned by LBV, a private equity consortium including Blackstone Group, Goldman Sachs, KKR, TPG Capital, and former CEO Dane Miller. – less