Before those issues are addressed, however, the first day will kick off with a bird’s-eye view of the medtech industry. This dual presenter session will offer a comprehensive review of trends the industry is experiencing, the impact of consolidation from both the supply chain and OEM points of view, the outlook for outsourcing, and what to expect in 2018 and beyond. Attendees can get involved in the discussion by asking questions on related topics that are important to them.
Chris Oleksy, founder and CEO of Oleksy Enterprises and Next Life Medical and CEO of Emergent Respiratory, brings to the Summit the expertise he shares in his regular contributed MPO supply chain column. In his session, Oleksy will address a potentially serious issue that involves the potential collapse of the supply, value, and care chains affecting the medical device industry—similar to the collapse the housing market experienced in 2008. Attendees will find out what’s behind this critical crisis, how they can help prepare their companies, and learn how to navigate the situation should it come to pass.
In the Make versus Buy panel, two supplier representatives and two medical device OEMs will discuss this significant question, which every major company must address somewhere along the product development path. Some of the issues a company might address when making this decision include the advantages and disadvantages of both routes, and the kind of support to expect from a supplier. These matters, and various other questions and topics associated with this topic will be the central focus of this panel. Audience members are encouraged to get involved in the discussion as well by sharing their own experiences with this process.
Following an extended networking opportunity (coupled with a buffet lunch) will be MPO Editorial Advisory Board member Bill Ellerkamp, operating partner with Inverness Graham Investments. He will examine the topic of global sourcing for the worldwide marketplace. In today’s healthcare space, serving one region is typically not enough. Better healthcare technologies are being demanded worldwide; if a company cannot address product demand and deliver its device to a certain area of the globe, a competitor will happily do so. Serving this worldwide market efficiently often means installing manufacturing centers within those regions. While that can help with costs, it can also bring new challenges associated with sourcing in those new regions. Ellerkamp will attempt to address many questions OEMs often have when attempting to serve a new region.
Companies may have already realized the cost savings that can be enjoyed via outsourcing, but they’re still concerned with their supply partners. OEMs often struggle with ways to ensure their outsourcing vendor(s) maintain regulatory and quality compliance standards, as one mistake by a third-party vendor can be devastating to a major company. Thus, Brian Weller RAC, partner with the Business Value Group Intl., will share techniques and best practices to help OEMs make the most of outsourcing arrangements while collaborating with their supply partners to ensure compliance and quality is upheld to the highest standards.
The event’s second day focus broadens beyond the outsourcing relationship to include commercialization, product development, and skills development and training. MedWorld Advisors’ COO and principal, Dave Sheppard, gets the day started with a session that should resonate particularly well with those in attendance from smaller and startup companies, or those who have a great idea for a new medical technology, but haven’t quite flushed out the business plan. Addressing areas such as commercialization, international markets, licensing, and private labeling, this session will provide insights on what a new business owner may not have considered. Unfortunately, a great new product idea isn’t enough; there’s much more that needs to be discussed. Sheppard’s session will identify and explore these building blocks in depth.
Developing the product idea, however, is quite important as well. Throw all the rest out the window if the best idea doesn’t take all factors into consideration and, ultimately, the company provides a product to the industry that it doesn’t want to use. Dr. Bryce G. Rutter, founder and CEO of the Metaphase Design Group, will explore the world of design in a session that will illustrate the critical factors necessary to ensure the right product is being made the right way. Although the focus will be on surgical instruments, there will undoubtedly be design takeaways for any professional involved in any stage of the product development process.
Closing out the Summit will be another panel discussion. This session will focus on the concerns involved with aging manufacturing professionals and the lack of young talent to replace them. Aware of the issue, many companies and organizations are attempting to provide solutions before this becomes a true problem for the industry and a real skills shortage takes hold. Topics of discussion for the panel include the problem itself and how participants are addressing it in their own sectors of the industry. Whether through apprenticeship, education, or training, real-world solutions will be shared and discussed. The audience is invited to pose questions to the panel regarding this growing problem or even share their own unique experiences related to the issue.
On behalf of the MPO Summit team, I hope to see you there!
Get further details on the speakers, panelists, and other conference sessions, as well as the networking opportunities and sponsors for the 2017 MPO Summit at www.mposummit.com.