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Inspire Puts Sluggish IPO Concerns to Bed with Filing

Nearly 11 years after being spun off from Medtronic, Inspire Medical is going public through a $75 million IPO.

Inspire Medical Systems is seeking to raise about $75 million through an initial public offering. The company said the IPO was for 5 million shares of its common stock and the price is expected to be between $14 and $16 per share. Inspire has been approved to list its common stock on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “INSP.”

The Minneapolis-based company has developed a neurostimulation device that provides treatment for moderate-to-severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). The technology is a closed-loop solution that uses an algorithm to continuously monitor a patient’s breathing patterns and delivers mild stimulation to the hypoglossal nerve to maintain an open airway during sleep.

Inspire won FDA approval for the device in 2014. The company was formed in 2007 when the technology and a significant intellectual property portfolio were spun out of Medtronic.

Inspire generated sales of $28.6 million last year with a net loss of $17.5 million. The company said it estimates that there are about 17 million individuals in the U.S. with moderate to severe OSA.

“The market for OSA treatment is large and growing,” Inspire said in a Securities Exchange Commission filing. “We believe there is a significant population in the United States with moderate to severe OSA who are unable to use or get consistent benefit from CPAP and who are eligible for our Inspire therapy.”

Other companies have stepped up to develop OSA treatment products with varying degrees of success. For example, Apnex Medical was in the process of developing technology for the market, but it closed down in 2013 after the company deemed it unlikely that it would meet a primary endpoint in its clinical trial.

LivaNova announced it was getting into the market when it made a bid to acquire San Diego, CA-based ImThera for $225 million. London-based LivaNova had been an investor in ImThera since 2011.

ImThera's implantable OSA device is designed to stimulate multiple tongue muscles via the hypoglossal nerve, which opens the airway while a patient is sleeping. The company is currently evaluating the OSA implant in a pivotal trial to obtain FDA premarket approval.

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