Covidien Pays $300M for Plymouth Med Device Co.

The deal through which the Irish health care giant will buy SuperDimension- which develops minimally invasive devices used to diagnose and possibly treat lung disease-is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.

SuperDimension, Ltd., an Israel-based medical device company that has its U.S. headquarters in Plymouth, has agreed to be acquired by Irish health care giant Covidien for $300 million-with “future earn-out payments possible.”

Covidien said Monday that it has signed a definitive agreement to buy all of the outstanding capital stock of SuperDimension, which develops minimally invasive interventional pulmonology devices used to diagnose and possibly treat lung disease.

The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2012. According to Covidien, SuperDimension's annual sales total approximately $30 million.

SuperDimension's iLogic System uses “Electromagnetic Navigation Bronchoscopy” to extend the reach of conventional bronchoscopes, thus enabling more effective evaluation of lung lesions and safer tissue biopsies. Lung cancer is the deadliest form of cancer in the United States and is expected to kill more than 160,000 people this year, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Bronchoscopes are thin, flexible tubes that are inserted into a patient's nose or mouth and then passed down the throat into the airways. A light and a small camera on the bronchoscope allow a doctor to see the patient's windpipe and airways and take pictures of them. The procedure is used to detect tumors, infections, blockages, and other lung problems-and it can also be used to treat lung problems.

SuperDimension President Dan Sullivan said that his company's devices are being sold in the United States, Europe, and Australia-and they have been used in 30,000 procedures performed in more than 400 hospitals, mostly in the United States.

A Covidien spokesperson said Tuesday that SuperDimension will operate as a standalone business under the Covidien umbrella, and Covidien plans to retain all SuperDimension employees. Sullivan said that his company employs 57 in Minnesota and an additional 50 salespeople elsewhere in the United States; it also has 22 employees in Israel and several distributors in Europe and Australia.

“Covidien's strategy is to invest in clinically and economically relevant products and technologies, which can meaningfully improve patient outcomes while reducing the overall cost of care,” Bryan Hanson, Covidien's president of surgical solutions, said in a statement. “The acquisition of SuperDimension will position Covidien to continue its investment in meaningful innovation by delivering more comprehensive solutions in the evaluation and treatment of lung diseases.”

Covidien is no stranger to Minnesota medical device firms. In June 2010, it paid $2.6 billion to acquire ev3, a public company that was based in Plymouth.