BY GREGORY ZELLER //
Hauppauge maker Intelligent Product Solutions is making its way into a projected $155 billion industry.
Just two months after cutting the ribbon on a satellite office in the heart of Minnesota’s busy digital-medicine R&D ecosystem, IPS has launched a new consulting practice focused exclusively on medical product design.
Led by Vice President Tim O’Brien, a 25-year medical-product veteran hired in 2016 to head up the Minnesota office, the Minneapolis-based Medical Product Design Consulting Practice provides software- and hardware-design services – prototyping through manufacturing – for WiFi-enabled smart devices and non-connected medical products.
The practice is especially keen on Internet of Things integration, usability design and other hallmarks of the IPS operation, including “medical wearables” and topflight data-security protocols – ensuring patient data flowing through devices with next-level connectivity remains “secure in compliance with regulatory requirements,” the company said.
Such forward thinking defines IPS’s foray into the medical-device market, which SelectUSA – the U.S. Department of Commerce’s business-investment facilitator – pegs for $155 billion in U.S. revenues in 2017.
There are about 6,500 U.S. medical-device companies, according to SelectUSA, with concentrations not only in Minnesota and New York but in California, Florida, Pennsylvania, Washington State and elsewhere. Combined, the U.S. makers represented roughly 43 percent of the global medical-device market in 2015, the Commerce Department notes, with U.S. exports exceeding $44 billion.
Into that crowded field wades IPS, with certain advantages tucked up its wearable-technology sleeve. SelectUSA notes that more than 80 percent of those 6,500 U.S. medical-device makers are “innovative start-up companies” with fewer than 50 employees and “little or no sales revenue,” but IPS – which also boasts a busy Washington State office – is a product-design veteran with numerous medical-product success stories and a multistate customer base.
It also has O’Brien, whose quarter-century of technology sales and marketing experience made him a household name, of sorts, along Minneapolis’ thriving digital-medicine corridor. Among other high-profile roles, O’Brien served as vice president of Minnesota-based IoT ace Exosite and held various leadership positions at Logic PD, a product-lifecycle expert in the Twin Cities region.
Perhaps most importantly, IPS has something no other Minnesota medical maker does, according to CEO Mitch Maiman: a Long Island headquarters.
Noting a “huge market opportunity for product design in the medical-products sector,” Maiman referenced a history of successful healthcare-related products engineered at the Hauppauge operation, including a “smart pill bottle” commercialized by New York-city based AdhereTech and the iKeyp, an IoT-integrated personal safe designed specifically for prescription bottles.
“Our product-design team here on Long Island has deep experience in smart, connected medical products,” Maiman told Innovate LI. “This new medical-products design practice is substantial for our Long Island office.”
O’Brien agreed that IPS’s “expertise in developing smart, connected product solutions, combined with expertise in medical-device development,” gave the new practice group “a competitive advantage in this fast-growing area of new-product development.”
Especially advantageous, the VP of sales noted, is IPS’s running head start on IoT connectivity.
“As healthcare is pushing into the digital era, medical-device companies are seeing the need to connect devices to drive outcomes,” O’Brien said. “We can do everything under one roof with our skilled team of product-design experts, making us the ideal partner for medical-product design.”