Medtronic buys MRI-guided laser maker Visualase

Medtronic has completed its buyout of Visualase, a company that develops and markets an FDA-approved magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-guided laser and image-guided system for minimally invasive neurosurgeries, including surgical thermal ablation.

Medtronic (Minneapolis, MN) has completed its buyout of Visualase (Houston, TX), a company that develops and markets an FDA-approved magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-guided laser and image-guided system for minimally invasive neurosurgeries, including surgical thermal ablation. Medtronic will add Visualase's MRI-guided laser ablation system to its portfolio of therapies for treating neurological conditions within its Surgical Technologies business, and will integrate the technology into its broader neuroscience offerings.

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Medtronic's neurosurgical solutions portfolio includes intra-operative imaging, surgical navigation, powered instruments, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) management, according to Mark Fletcher, senior VP and president of Medtronic Surgical Technologies. "The Visualase laser ablation technology gives neurosurgeons a minimally invasive option to precisely target and treat small areas of tissues," he adds.

The all-cash transaction of up to $105 million includes an initial payment of $70 million plus additional payments of up to $35 million, which are contingent upon the achievement of specific milestones. Medtronic had previously invested in Visualase and held an ownership stake in the company prior to completion of the acquisition. Net of this ownership stake, the initial payment is approximately $64 million. Medtronic expects the net impact from this transaction to be neutral to fiscal year 2015 earnings and accretive thereafter, and for this transaction to be consistent with the company's disciplined focus on long-term returns.

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