Minnetronix, medical device maker, expands to St. Paul – Twin Cities
After 25 years of deploying medical devices from other companies, St. Paul-based contractor Minnetronix Medical began to design some of their own.
The MindsEye Port – a small but expandable insert used in deep brain surgery – received Federal Food and Drug Administration clearance last year for the treatment of stroke, cancer, and other conditions. MindsEye is a few months away from being on the market and, if regulatory reviews are favorable, could be followed next year by a spinal catheter that draws blood from cerebrospinal fluid after an aneurysm.
These weren’t the only innovations that made CEO Jeremy Maniak feel optimistic about the company’s growth. Over the past year, Minnetronix has recruited 75 new employees – about half of whom are engineers – at its headquarters at 1635 Energy Park Drive, just off Snelling Avenue, bringing the total workforce to more than 400 employees. Maniak, who joined Minnetronix in 2010, was named the company’s chief executive in early 2020, weeks before the pandemic officially hit Minnesota.
$ 6 MILLION ENLARGEMENT
A year-long, $ 6 million physical expansion reshaped the three-building campus, increasing its footprint from 120,000 to 160,000 square feet, in part thanks to $ 1 million in grants and loans from the Department of L ‘Employment and Economic Development (DEED).
“We are 100 percent in Saint-Paul,” Maniak said in a recent interview. “Obviously, we have a global supply chain. We reach all over the world for parts, but all the high-end testing and assembly takes place right here in St. Paul. (We) design, develop and manufacture over 100 different medical devices every day.
Maniak said the company’s customer base has doubled in five years and that there are 85 ongoing contract projects.
This is the kind of growth that has caught the attention of city and state leaders keen to raise the city’s business profile in the areas of technology and innovation.
Minnetronix is privately supported by Altaris Capital Partners, a New York-based investment firm specializing exclusively in the healthcare sector. Altaris, which had held a minority stake in the company since 2016, became the majority shareholder in February.
On Monday, the Mayor of St. Paul Carter and DEED Commissioner Steve Grove are expected to tour the expanded facilities with Maniak and celebrate a ribbon cut for the renovated campus. The mayor plans to declare Monday “Minnetronix Day” in Saint-Paul.
Part factory, part research center and part head office, the Minnetronix campus is made up of about twenty laboratories, a traditional factory floor, “clean rooms” for sterile manufacturing and offices of business. From there, the devices are shipped to medical customers around the world, from start-ups to global companies including Smiths Medical, based in Plymouth, Minnesota, and ActivSurgical, based in Boston.
“There aren’t a lot of companies in the state that are touching so much medical technology,” Maniak said. “We have seen very significant investments in health care and in medical technology. When people fund new innovations and therapies, and better, faster, and cheaper health care delivery, it helps drive growth, and we are well positioned to take advantage of it. We have really recruited a lot of people, from engineers and assemblers to key leadership positions across the company. “
Over the years, Minnetronix has focused on four main segments of the medical technology industry: fluid and gas management, optical systems, RF / EM energy equipment, and the stimulation and active clothing markets. critical devices, such as glucose monitors.
As demand for non-essential medical services nearly dried up at the start of the pandemic last year, with hospitals postponing non-critical care, other customers have relied on the company’s expertise more than ever. in manufacturing and supply chain.
“All of these customers needed our help, they just needed our help in different ways,” Maniak said. “(We) were helping our customers slow down and take a break if they weren’t essential, and then, in many cases, speed up delivery and supply chains. Both ends of the spectrum. We have seen the extremes of both. … At first it was “survive”, then we moved on to “thrive”. We were able to go into “thrive” mode fairly quickly. “
He added that “one of the basic elements of our corporate culture is ‘What can you do to help?’ and “What can you control?” Rather than getting lost in what is happening to you. The world is very volatile. We can’t control that. But we can control how we react and how we present ourselves in this environment. “
For the campus expansion, the builder was Gardner Builders of Minneapolis, Pope Architects of St. Paul provided architectural and interior design services, and Intereum of Plymouth provided the furniture.