ConforMIS Adds $89M to Expand Sales, Manufacturing, Technology

1/30/12Follow @xconomy

Burlington, MA-based ConforMIS, a medical device company with a newly FDA approved knee replacement system, announced today that it has secured $89 million in a Series E investment.

The money comes from London-based AGC Equity Partners, New York-based Axel Johnson, government investment funds from Asia and the United Arab Emirates, as well as other private equity funds in the U.S., Europe, Asia and the Middle East. ConforMIS raised $50 million in Series D financing in July 2009 from sovereign funds of Kuwait and Singapore, and private equity investors such as Aeris Capital of Zurich, Switzerland, and Palo Alto, CA. CEO Philipp Lang says many of the startup’s return backers participated in the newest funding round.

Lang noted that the Series E investors are largely private equity investors focused on public transactions, meaning that if the time comes, they could invest the amount they did in the Series E in an initial public offering. So, is an IPO in the works for ConforMIS?

“This fundraise is very execution focused,” says Lang. “[An IPO] is not the primary objective for us right now.”

Last year, the FDA approved ConforMIS’s patient-specific, total knee replacement system, which Lang says is the first of its kind. The company, founded in 2004, originally sold patient-specific partial knee replacements. Lang says that the FDA approval of its newest system opens up a huge market for the company, as total knee replacements make up 90 percent of the roughly 700,000 knee replacement surgeries that occur each year in the U.S. ConforMIS plans to expand its technology this year to develop implants for another joint, Lang says.

ConforMIS also plans to use the new funding to expand its sales force in the U.S. and abroad to support the new market opportunity. It is planning to move the manufacturing of the implants in-house, and is in the process of looking for a new site in Massachusetts for that purpose. It currently manufactures personalized surgical instruments that go along with the knee implants. ConforMIS has 200 employees in Massachusetts, but that number is “going to increase significantly” in the next year as a result of this expansion, Lang says.

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