Abbott’s next big step

The acquisition of St. Jude Medical will result in one of the world’s premier medical-device companies. 

Abbott Laboratories said on Thursday that it would buy St. Jude Medical in a $25 billion deal to expand its heart device business, but investors worried that the acquisition would not pay off as promised.

Abbott has long been a leader in vascular care, through its stents and related products. And, in recent years, the company has built a strong position in mitral valve repair with its MitraClip device. The agreement to acquire St. Jude Medical broadens Abbott’s presence in virtually every aspect of cardiovascular care, and will make Abbott one of the world leaders in the broad medical device market.

St. Jude is focused on several key areas in medical devices: heart failure, arrhythmias, vascular disease, structural heart and chronic pain. Its product portfolio is highly complementary and brings Abbott leading positions in areas such as atrial fibrillation, cardiac rhythm management, and heart failure, among other cardiovascular and neurological specialties.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is one of the most important health challenges worldwide. In the U.S., for example, more than 40 percent of adults are expected to have some form of CVD by 2030. The addition of St. Jude, with its strength across the spectrum of cardiovascular care technologies, allows Abbott to help more people around the world improve their health in more ways than ever before.

With St. Jude, Abbott’s Medical Devices business will have an industry-leading portfolio of newly-launched and pipeline technologies across a broad range of medical technologies. This combined pipeline is expected to deliver many new products. Together, Abbott and St. Jude will be able to better provide what healthcare customers are seeking: the broadest portfolios of innovative products to help them better care for patients and become more effective and efficient.

Headquartered near St. Paul, Minnesota, USA, St. Jude was founded in 1976 with the introduction of an innovative heart valve. In the 40 years since, the company has grown through a steady stream of innovations and acquisitions to be one the most prominent companies in cardiovascular care. A member of the Fortune 500, it had 2015 sales of almost $6 billion.