Wright Intros CLAW II System

International orthopedic devices company Wright Medical (WMGI) has commenced full launch of its CLAW II polyaxial compression plating system for foot and ankle surgeries. The Tennessee-based company said that the new plating system will be available in the U.S. through its foot and ankle sales force. Outside the U.S., it will be marketed in select nations through the company’s direct sales team as well as distribution partners.

The CLAW II system, which features Wright Medical’s ORTHOLOC 3DSi polyaxial locking screw technology, integrates the stability and adjustable compression features of the company’s CLAW plating system with better surgical flexibility enabled by new shape configurations and polyaxial screw positioning.

The ORTHOLOC technology offers surgeons with greater flexibility in placing a locking screw and enables them to solidly lock the screw to the plate, thereby providing enhanced stability.

The CLAW II system, which is built upon the success of Wright Medical’s CHARLOTTE CLAW plating system, further reinforces the company’s foot and ankle product franchise. It has been fine tuned to enable surgeons to choose the appropriate implants while performing fusions in the foot and ankle.

Wright Medical is a global orthopedic devices company specializing in the development and marketing of reconstructive joint devices and bio-orthopedic materials. It is a leader in the U.S. and German markets for foot and ankle surgical products. The company retains its strength in the niche extremities segment.

We feel future revenue growth will be supported by new product (including internally developed and those from acquisitions) launches. Moreover, new deals in extremities, Wright Medical’s fastest growing segment, are expected to bolster growth in this business. Within extremities, foot and ankle products are expected to be a major growth driver.

However, our views are moderated by lingering compliance issues and intense competition from larger orthopedic players. Wright Medical competes with much larger players such as Zimmer Holdings (ZMH), Stryker (SYK), Johnson & Johnson’s (JNJ) De Puy and Smith & Nephew (SNN).

Moreover, the company remains exposed to pricing/procedure volume headwinds. Costs associated with restructuring will also continue to be a drag on the company’s bottom line. We are currently Neutral on Wright Medical. The stock curently retains a short-term Zacks #4 Rank (Sell).

Josh Sandberg

Josh Sandberg is the President and CEO of Ortho Spine Partners and sits on several company and industry related Boards. He also is the Creator and Editor of OrthoSpineNews.

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