C. R. Bard is no upstart in the world of medical devices. The company has been in the business for more than a century and introduced the Foley urological catheter (still one of its top sellers) in 1934. Its products fall into four general therapeutic categories: vascular, oncology, urology, and surgical specialties. Among other things, the company makes stents, catheters, and guidewires used in angioplasties and other vascular procedures; catheters for delivering chemotherapy treatments; and urology catheters and products used to treat urinary incontinence. Its line of specialty surgical tools, made by subsidiary Davol, includes devices used in laparoscopic and orthopedic procedures and for hernia repair.
While the US accounts for more than two-thirds of sales, Bard sells its more than 8,000 products in more than 100 countries through numerous subsidiaries, joint ventures, and affiliated representatives. Its largest international markets are Europe and Japan. The company focuses marketing programs and expansion efforts on its four key product areas, seeking to provide a diverse and cutting-edge line of offerings to hospitals, doctors' offices, and extended-care, alternate site, and other health care facilities. The majority of its products are one-time use items and are primarily disposable or implantable. Sales through wholesale distributors, including Owens & Minor, account for about one-third of revenue.
Bard regularly conducts research and development and acquisition activities in all segments of its business, with the goal of providing products that produce superior clinical outcomes, serve a broader customer base, and drive growth in underserved markets. R&D costs for 2011 and 2010 were more than $185 million for each year.
The majority of the company's product sales come from its vascular, oncology, and urology divisions, each accounting for more than 25% of sales. For many years urology products made up the largest product segment, accounting for about 30% of revenues; however, both the vascular and oncology segments overtook the lead product segment in 2010.
The company has been especially focused on growing its vascular operations in recent years. The division makes angioplasty catheters, peripheral vascular stents, biopsy devices, and electrode catheters (used to diagnose and treat heart arrhythmias). In 2011 Bard acquired Minneapolis-based Lutonix, Inc., for about $225 million, with another $100 million due upon FDA premarket approval of Lutonix's drug-coated percutaneous transluminal angioplasty balloon for treating diseased arteries. The device has already received CE mark approval, and Bard expects to start selling it in Europe in the second half of 2012.
In 2010 Bard purchased breast cancer device manufacturer SenoRx for about $200 million. The purchase added products including Contura, a brachytherapy catheter that delivers radiation to eliminate cancerous tumors and EnCor, which lets physicians collect multiple breast biopsy samples with a single probe insertion. Following the purchase, SenoRx was integrated into the Bard Biopsy Systems division. In 2009 the company launched a new breast biopsy sample tool, the Finesse, which can take multiple samples at one time. To further expand the unit, in 2009 it purchased Y-Med, maker of the VascuTrack specialty angioplasty catheters, for $35 million.
In addition to catheters used in vascular procedures, Bard makes catheters and ports used to deliver chemotherapy in cancer patients. The company holds a leading market position with its specialty vascular access products. Its oncology segment also includes ultrasound devices and enteral feeding tubes.
Along with its core line of Foley catheters, the urology segment includes sales of surgical slings used to treat incontinence, brachytherapy (radioactive) seeds for prostate cancer treatment, and urine monitoring and collection systems. Bard's urology catheter portfolio includes an infection-control catheter (the Bardex IC) that uses a silver coating technology to reduce the risk of urinary tract infection.
In 2011 Bard also boosted its critical care product line and gained entry into the therapeutic hypothermia market by purchasing Colorado-based Medivance for $250 million and integrating the business into its medical division. Medivance, which makes the Arctic Sun temperature management system, is a market leader in the rapidly growing field of temperature manipulation as a treatment for critically ill patients.
Bard expanded its smallest segment, the surgical specialty products division by acquiring Brennen Medical's hernia products business for $17 million (2009). The purchase added xenografting devices (XenMatrix) to Bard's line of hernia repair items, which also includes hernia patches and plugs. To widen the segment's product offerings, Bard also launched a new laparoscopic device (the SorbaFix) that year, and it acquired rights to the Allomax breast reconstruction patch. In 2010 the SorbaFix technology was extended to a new PermaFix permanent anchor fixation device.
Fund manager Donald Yacktman and various investment groups own almost a third of the company. – less