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Sterile Medical Packaging Market Projected to Grow 5.3% Annually


 

Sterile Medical Packaging Market Projected to Grow 5.3% Annually

Study sees unit demand jumping to 7.2 billion

The sterile medical packaging market is expected to grow 5.3% annually to reach $1.4 billion by 2002, according to a report published by The Freedonia Group Inc. (Cleveland). The report, Sterile Packaging, attributes the growth to continuing attempts to raise infection control standards, an aging population, and demand for sterile packaging configurations designed to provide greater convenience, such as surgical trays.

The study predicts that the trend toward the use of disposables rather than reusables will continue. Sales and demand gains will slow, however, as a result of a decrease in the number of surgical procedures, a slower rate of disposable product replacements for reusable medical supplies and devices, and shorter hospital stays.

The report gives a breakdown of projected growth for specific segments within the sterile packaging market. The market for thermoformed trays will increase 6% through 2002, to $395 million, because of their use in surgical and diagnostic test kits. Blister packs and clamshells will see 7% market growth through 2002, to $115 million, primarily because of the demand for disposable contact lenses. Pouches and bags will see 5.7% annual market growth through 2002, to $336 million and $153 million, respectively. And growth in the market for parenteral containers such as plastic IV containers and vials will slow because of the maturing of this segment of the market. For more information on the report, which is available for $3300, call 440/684-9600.


Rapid Prototyping Market Shrinking

Report documents sharp decline in RP revenues

Rapid prototyping (RP) sales have gone from bad to worse, according to a report from Wohlers Associates Inc. (Fort Collins, CO). The report, titled Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, State of the Industry, notes that on the heels of a weak 1997, revenues from RP sales and services fell more sharply in 1998 than in any previous year. Last year, in fact, RP system sales actually declined from the previous year, marking only the second time in history such a decline has occurred. A bright spot for the industry is 3-D printers for concept modeling, which the report points to as a key to future sales growth. For more information on the report, which is available for $345, call 970/225-0086.


Business and Acquisition News

BEI Medical Systems Company, Inc. (Teterboro, NJ), has entered into an agreement with the University of Birmingham (Edgbaston, UK) and Janesh K. Gupta, a member of the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, for the worldwide rights to manufacture, market, and distribute the Gupta-Frank clamp, an instrument used in vaginal hysterectomies. Custom tubing extruder NDH Medical Inc. (St. Petersburg, FL) has announced plans for a new manufacturing facility and headquarters in Sevierville, TN. The 25,000-sq-ft, $1 million manufacturing facility will have a staff of 25 and will be expandable to 100,000 sq ft. CMS Hartzell (Richmond, KY; St. Paul, MN) and Global Tool & Engineering (Dallas) have completed their merger agreement. CMS Hartzell will combine its die-casting, sheet-metal stamping, and plastics injection molding services with Global Tool's engineering, prototyping and tooling, and short-run injection molding services. Infinite Group Inc. (Warwick, RI) has combined the recently formed company Express Pattern (Buffalo Grove, IL) with newly acquired plastics injection molder Osley & Whitney Inc. (Westfield, MA) and metallurgical firm Materials & Manufacturing Technologies Inc. (West Kingston, RI). Particle accelerator designer Ion Beam Applications (Louvain-La-Neuve, Belgium) has acquired SteriGenics International (Fremont, CA), a provider of high-quality contract gamma sterilization, microorganism reduction, and radiation processing services for $27 per share in cash. The company had previously acquired Griffith Micro Sciences (Chicago) in April of 1999. Eastman Chemical Co. (Kingsport, TN) has announced plans to acquire the ethylene methyl acrylate and ethylene butyl acrylate product lines of Chevron Chemical Company LLC (San Ramon, CA). The transaction should be finalized at the end of the third quarter of 1999. Motor, drive, and servo system manufacturer Kollmorgen (Radford, VA) has agreed to purchase New England Affiliated Technologies (Lawrence, MA), a company that designs and manufactures precision positioning and motion control products. HealthShield Technologies (Westport, CT) has entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with AK Steel (Middletown, OH). AK Steel will coat carbon and stainless-steel products with HealthShield, a silver-based antimicrobial agent. Custom injection molder Topcraft Precision Molders Inc. (Warminster, PA) was awarded Best Plant status by the Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center. The award was given as a result of the company's success in rapid tool setup, team effectiveness, and space utilization.

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