Wen Wei Po published "C&G Medical breaks international monopoly ......"
- Categories:News Center
- Time of issue:2014-09-15 17:14
Wen Wei Po published "C&G Medical breaks international monopoly ......"
By Ye Songting In recent times, several global multinational companies producing core components of MRI equipment are a bit nervous because local Chinese companies are beginning to call their bluff, and one of them is Shanghai Centron Medical Technology Co. This seemingly infamous local company has broken the GPS (General Electric, Philips, Siemens) "triumvirate" of MRI system key components "magnetic resonance coil" (i.e. RF detector) for many years in the previous 10 years. This has helped domestic medical institutions save a lot of money. "We have drilled deep into the MRI coil market, and it's time to enter other related segments of the industry chain." Wang Jie, chairman of the company, said that the new research team will be assembled soon, and the "charge" will be blown within the year. The "returnee" boss monthly salary of 800 yuan back in 2004, when MRI equipment has begun to gradually popularize in domestic hospitals, but whether the machine or parts, most of the "three giants" monopoly, local enterprises in this field almost a blank. The local enterprises in this field were almost blank. After completing his PhD in Japan and working in the United States for several years, Wang Jie decided to return to China because of a phone call from a fellow student at Fudan. Leaving his wife and children with a sum of money for living expenses, he flew back to Shanghai with all his savings of $30,000 and lived in a three-room apartment lent to him by his senior brother, which turned out to be a small living room that became Tatsunoko's initial office. "I lived in one room, stuffed all the remaining furniture into the other room, and then converted the vacated living room into a laboratory." The lab was soon up and running, but $30,000 was almost spent because the company was engaged in magnetic resonance coil research and development abroad. There were only five people in the company, three doctors, one technician and one administrative manager. In order to save money, we had to order 5 box lunches at noon for $5. The general manager was paid $800 per month, the administrative manager $600, and the highest income was the R&D director, who was paid $3000 per month. Because only expenses without income, and persist for a while, the company is about to "run out of money". At this time, the Municipal Science and Technology Commission funded 500,000 yuan of scientific research, and the Municipal Food and Drug Administration, which could not find the industry classification in the medical equipment catalog, completed all the procedures in eight months and helped the company get the Medical Device Manufacturer License and the Medical Device Registration Certificate. "I have inquired, if the company does not land in Shanghai, slowly go through the process may have to wait a year and a half." Wang Jie said. With the money, the license, and the contacts and influence accumulated abroad, the company finally pulled in its first order: four coils designed for customers, with a design fee of $250,000. Drill into the "blue ocean" to engage in scientific research After passing the "life and death crisis", the company will invest a lot of resources in new product development. Zhang Songtao, director of research and development, said that there are two general directions of research and development: one is to optimize existing products, reduce costs or improve performance. Centron had designed a joint head and neck coil, before the "Big Three" monopoly market, similar products sold for about 1 million yuan each. After Centron's product was introduced, its performance was similar but it was sold for about 300,000 yuan, forcing the "Big Three" to lower the price to less than 400,000 yuan. For MRI machines, the coils are "semi-consumable" and may be damaged and need to be replaced after a period of time, so Centron's "catfish" has helped domestic medical institutions save a lot of money on equipment. Another more important direction is to "tailor" new products to market gaps and the needs of medical institutions. They previously heard customers complaining that nowadays there are more and more cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, and the carotid artery has become an "accident-prone place", but there has been no coil specifically for the carotid artery on the market, and hospitals can only use neck coils or combined head and neck coils instead, but the clarity is not high. Finding this "blue ocean", C&G jumped in and soon developed a carotid artery coil, with a key indicator "signal-to-noise ratio" about three times higher than that of other alternative coils, which means doctors can see capillaries and early lesions more clearly. Relying on the product's cost performance and technical advantages, Centron has obtained 69 patents in recent years, and its business data has shown "exponential" growth: the annual output value of 10 million yuan in 2008 reached 83 million yuan in 2012, and is expected to hit 100 million yuan this year. In this segment of the magnetic resonance coil market, the world's two largest companies in the United States, Centron is close behind. Looking for a new "engine" for development After ten years of development, Centron, which has a considerable scale, has now encountered a "bottleneck" and started to brew transformation. Centron has been focusing on being a supplier of coil components to MRI manufacturers, and this "wholesale business" brings in 75 to 85 percent of total revenue, with only 15 to 25 percent being "retail business" for individual medical institutions. Only 15 to 25 percent is "retail business" for individual medical institutions. However, since last year, because of the implementation of the "return to industry" strategy of some manufacturing companies, the growth of the wholesale business has slowed down, and the company needs to find a new development "engine". Wang Jie said, "This year, the company has two main actions, the development of coil retail business, start to expand the magnet market segments." Currently, preparations for the expansion of new markets are in place, and a team of R&D personnel will be formed soon. The company has initially decided to focus on the 1.5T and 3.0T magnets used in hospital MRI systems, as well as the 7.0T magnets used mainly for animal experiments, with the aim of launching related products next year. Probably because of the good reputation earned by doing coils, several medical institutions have already approached us for cooperation before the magnet development work has really started. Wang Jie said: "After entering the magnet market, the company will target the market gaps to break the monopoly of foreign companies as soon as possible. According to the company's long-term plan, in the future, Centron will cover the full range of MRI market segments and strive to represent Chinese companies to become the leading global digital imaging medical equipment components industry."