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Intuitive Surgical’s India Story

Why India will Lead Intuitive Surgical’s Global Growth

India, offers a compelling market opportunity to any global medical device player, no wonder then that the world’s most sought after technologically advanced medical device manufacturer set shop in India. This particular company is defined by its high quality products and a strong sales momentum. Yes! This is Sunnyvale, California based Intuitive Surgical, a pioneer in robotic-assisted, minimally invasive surgery devices.

In 2018, the company established a direct sales office in India. This was a significant step for Intuitive because India is only the sixth international office, the company has setup outside the US. We looked at the reasons why India is an important market for medical device manufacturers specially Intuitive Surgical.

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Future Back Strategy

Establishing office in India is Intuitive’s future back strategy. Asia is the fastest growing economic region of the world and in the next 10 years it is expected to contribute 60 per cent of the global GDP growth, according to the Asian Development Bank report – Asian Development Outlook 2017. China and India are the two countries that will contribute immensely to this growth. This provides an unprecedented market opportunity for business across the globe. Setting up an office in India to harness this opportunity is a good strategic initiative. Intuitive’s India office will position the company to not only gain an early mover advantage in this market but establish itself to compete in this market in the coming few years.

Strong Momentum in India

One of the early signs of success for Intuitive in India were the Indian surgeons. Indian surgeons are highly regarded among international peers because of their expertise and experience. In addition, the newer generation of surgeons is very keen to adopt newer technologies. The credit for bringing da Vinci to India goes to Dr Naresh Trehan, who brought the system in 2002 at Escorts heart Institute and Research Centre (EHIRC), New Delhi. All India Institute of Medical Sciences, (AIIMS) New Delhi followed suite and got two da Vinci systems for their urology and cardiology departments. Today there are about 70 systems, placed across India.

The uptake of robotic surgery is growing in both private as well as public sector hospitals. The burden of non-communicable diseases is increasing in India, with oncology affecting more people every year. Complications in surgical procedures are prompting surgeons to look at newer technologies allowing for safer and better surgical assistance. The aim is to be able to deliver better outcomes with less morbidity. Robotic assisted surgical technologies provide this distinct advantage over open and laparoscopic surgeries, which is a boon for surgeons.

The company is likely to invest in building a robust ecosystem to facilitate robotic surgery in India. This will also help the company to capitalise on the current positive momentum in India. Recently, the Clinical Robotic Surgery Association launched its India chapter. Intuitive will be able to make the most of this academic association to further training and education along with expanding evidence based for its key robotic procedures; enhancing collaboration opportunities with India’s surgical community.

Globally, 21,000 peer-reviewed published articles support the safety, efficacy, and benefits of da Vinci surgical systems.

Added Benefits

Intuitive Surgical has set up its sixth international office in India, headquartered at Bengaluru. The company has a strong 100+ employees in sales, marketing, field service engineering, and business operations who support customers throughout the country.

The India office will also allow the company to extend its depth in India and also other South-East Asian countries and Africa market, by expanding its procedures and installation base.

Bengaluru’s IT expertise is an added advantage to any innovative company looking to add and expand its IT offering. The company could pursue partnerships and collaboration with like-minded health-tech and startups in India to align with Intuitive’s aim of better outcomes with maximum benefits.

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