4 Small Medical Device Companies to Watch

- January 3rd, 2018

Now that 2017 is behind us, the INN takes a closer look at some medical device companies with interesting paths ahead of them in 2018–be it from upcoming trials, recent approvals or potential developments on the horizon.

Now that 2017 is behind us, the Investing News Network (INN) takes a closer look at some medical device companies with interesting paths ahead of them in 2018–be it from upcoming trials, recent approvals or potential developments on the horizon.
Investors are always on the lookout for new opportunities and with the rapid development of the medical device sector is key to get ahead of the herd with new options.
With the arduous process of development in this sector it’s also important to remind investors of the patience needed with essentially all options in the life sciences. On that note, here’s a look at four small market cap medical device companies for investors to keep an eye out for in 2018.

TransEnterix (NYSE:TRXC)
Market cap: 408.45 million; share price: $2.05
INN is particularly excited about the potential of the surgical robotics market becoming a dominant force in the medical device sector in 2018. One such company doing so is TransEnterix, who earned the spotlight in 2017 after it obtained its 510(k) clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for their Senhance Surgical Robotic System.
“Research shows there is a startling need to improve the ergonomic conditions for laparoscopic surgeons given the unique physical and cognitive ergonomic challenges they face in the OR,” Todd Pope, president and chief executive officer of the company told INN.
While the year is still early, so far in 2018 the company has seen a 6.22 percent increase to its share price. In 2017 the company’s stock price closed the year with a 48.46 percent increase to its value. Analysts with Stifel wrote in a note to investors that TransEnterix was looking to build the commercial sales infrastructure for their system.
“Much work still needs to be done to build commercial scale, but with this initial approval in hand, the company should have a steady cadence of additional indication and technology approvals over the next several years,” the report co-authored by Stifel analyst Rick Wise said.
Market cap: 237.10 million; share price: $2.56
In terms of its share price, 2017 was looking promising for TSO3, up until August when its stock price took an 8.95 percent nosedive that has derailed the company’s stock. In fact, that dip to TS03’s share price on August 23 was even recognized by the company in a statement.
That same day, Spruce Point Capital released some tough criticism for the development of the company through an in-depth report. One of the leading critiques of the company came in terms of the company facing competition relating to similar products from the likes of Johnson and Johnson (NYSE:JNJ).
“VP4 trails its competitors’ offerings across sterilizable universe, technology UX, product maintenance and pricing,” the report said. TS03 finished 2017 with a 7.77 percent decrease to its share value. Despite the downward trend, it’ll be interesting to see how TSO3 responds in 2018 as it moves to add claims for its device in the US.
In December the company provided an update to its current dialogue with “US Regulators” in the terms of seeking an extended claim to their STERIZONE VP4 Sterilizer, which the company wants to include terminal sterilization of duodenoscopes. This is one of the key developments for TSO3 to watch out for in 2018.
Ric Rumble, president, and CEO of TSO3 said the company would schedule a discussion exchange with the regulators early in 2018. “The Company expects that final labeling could be submitted after that time,” Rumble said.
Based on four analyst ratings, the company currently has a “Strong Buy” designation on TipRanks, while it’s average price target from analysts is $3.88.

Helius Medical Technologies (TSX:HSM)
Market cap: 298.15 million; share price: $2.97
Throughout 2017 Helius saw a positive stream of news that helped its stock increase in share price over 65 percent.
For example, in November the company shared the results from the safety and effectiveness trial of their Portable Neuromodulation Stimulator which treats patients with chronic balance deficits due to mild-to-moderate traumatic brain injury.
Moving into 2018 the company plans to submit a 510(k) application with the FDA and expects a clearance “in the second half of 2018.”
“The data showed participants who received PoNS Therapy experienced average SOT score improvements double to triple the increase that would be expected with physical therapy alone in a much shorter timeframe,” Philippe Deschamps, CEO of Helius said.
Helius is confident traumatic brain injuries represent an area of medicine with an unmet need, which alongside its trial data will help the case for their device. A clearance from the FDA could prove to be a major catalyst for shareholders of the company in 2018.
RepliCel Life Sciences (TSXV:RP; OTCQB:REPCD)
Market cap: 9.54 million; share price: $0.44
Despite a strong first few months of 2017 for RepliCel, the rest of the year dragged its share price down on the TSX Venture and OTC Market. The company was caught at a stage when its latest products weren’t fully developed yet, but the potential was there. Despite the addition of cell therapies into its portfolio, the company’s most advanced candidate and the reason for its inclusion in this list is its dermal injector device.
Lee Buckler, CEO of RepliCel told INN it was ironic their dermal injector would be the first to launch since it was the last one the company began developing. In 2018 the company hopes to obtain a CE Mark in Europe for the device, through that potential clearance then it hopes to enter the North American market.
“In the longer term, we are excited about this dermal injector as an integral companion to the cell therapy that we are developing for aging and sun damaged skin as well,” Buckler told INN. So far in 2018, the company’s Venture stock has risen in value 11.25 percent.

Don’t forget to follow us @INN_LifeScience for real-time news updates.
This is an updated version of an article originally published on Life Science Investing News on 2016.
Securities Disclosure: I, Bryan Mc Govern, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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