A Medical Device Daily

Volcano (San Diego) a developer of products for the diagnosis of coronary and peripheral artery disease reported that it has signed a termination agreement with its largest distributor in Japan, Goodman.

The company said this agreement will enable Volcano to accelerate its transition to a direct sales force in the market to support its intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and Functional Measurement (FM) consoles and disposables, as well as products currently in development.

"We are delighted to be completing this transition nearly a year ahead of our original timetable," said Scott Huennekens, president/CEO of Volcano. "Japan is the largest IVUS market in the world. Given recent clinical data, Japan also represents a great market opportunity for our FM offerings, as well as the products in our pipeline, such as image-guided therapy, optical coherence tomography (OCT), forward-looking IVUS and Impact micro-catheters. By going direct, we hope to replicate in Japan the market share gains we have achieved in our other key geographies, such as the U.S. and Europe."

"We have already laid the groundwork for this transition, as we now have more than 40 sales reps and approximately 80 total personnel in Japan, and we expect to complete the customer transition process by the end of the third quarter," he added.

Ending the partnership with Goodman allows Volcano to better meet the needs of Japanese doctors and provide more focused service and support, the company said. Volcano also said having a direct sales force will create better terms, and will allow the company to create its own sales and marketing initiatives and lead the launch of new products.

Volcano Japan has agreed to pay Goodman 350 million Japanese yen, plus 5% Japanese consumption tax ($3.9 million), between July 15 and Aug. 31. Volcano Japan plans to allocate this entire amount to the purchase of IVUS consoles, and depreciate it over the next ten quarters.

Volcano Japan has also agreed to repurchase from Goodman any remaining IVUS and FM disposables on Aug 31. While Volcano said it does not expect such repurchases to be financially material, to the extent there is a buyback of disposables, it is expected to occur in the third quarter and be treated as contra revenue.

The company has also agreed to pay Goodman commissions based on net receipts of Volcano Japan from the sale of products to customers transferred from Goodman to Volcano from July 1 to Dec. 31. Volcano guarantees a minimum total commission of 310 million Japanese yen ($3.3 million). The commissions will be expensed as they occur.

"We want to express our appreciation to Goodman for their support over the past several years and their cooperation during this process. They have been a good partner and helpful in communicating this change to customers and they will continue to assist us with this transition. Both parties believe that this is a fair agreement that facilitates a smooth transition and enables Volcano to continue delivering its leading-edge offerings to patients in Japan and the clinicians that treat them," Huennekens said.

Volcano also backed its annual revenue forecast of $218 million to $223 million, and said it expects to lose between 38 cents and 43 cents per share for the year.

Perot Systems launches Chinese web site

Perot Systems (Plano, Texas) reported the launch of a Chinese-language web site as part of the company's expanded presence into China's market for information technology (IT) and business-process services.

"Perot Systems is in the early stages of business development with China-based organizations, and we are grateful for the reception we have received from local leaders across the country," said David Miller, Perot Systems Managing Director for China. "The new web site will help Chinese enterprises become acquainted with Perot Systems, learn about our extensive capabilities, and understand our strong values."

The web site – www.perotsystems.cn – provides translations of the current Perot Systems corporate website. It also contains additional features that portray the company's value proposition to the Chinese market.

Perot Systems creates and delivers IT and business-process services that help organizations operate more effectively and efficiently. The company's core capabilities include the development, deployment, and management of IT applications, IT infrastructure, and business processes. Target vertical markets include healthcare and a variety of commercial industries.

BioMask now available in Hong Kong

Filligent's (Hong Kong) patented anti-microbial face mask, the BioMask is now available in Hong Kong. The mask, which traps and kills germs like H1N1 upon contact, was launched at one of Asia's leading drugstore chains, Watsons. In addition, Hong Kong's biggest travel agency, Hong Thai, will be providing the BioMask, on a complimentary basis, to all air travelers through the end of August. Up until now, the CE-certified, specialist mask has only been available to medical and healthcare professionals. The launch and availability of the BioMask in consumer retailers and service providers is significant because, as CEO Melissa Mowbray-d'Arbela says, 'The BioMask is the first 'intelligent' face mask. You don't have to be a healthcare worker or medical professional to use it correctly. Instead, the mask is very easy to put on, wear and dispose of properly. Thus, it's one of the best forms of protection for ordinary people and their children during this year's swine flu crisis."

Whereas ordinary surgical masks fit poorly with lots of leakage from the sides and become easily contaminated with live germs, the company said the BioMask is easy to put on, fits securely and kills germs continuously. Unlike an ordinary mask, it is not covered with live germs when you take it off. Thus, the BioMask is great for kids who tend to touch and fidget with face masks.

The BioMask is the first product in Filligent's anti-microbial BioFriend personal care range to be launched at Watsons. Other BioFriendproducts, including a dry-sanitizing handkerchief (QuickCloth), adhesive dry-sanitizing stickers (QuickPatch), odour-control insole (BioSole), cosmetic puffs (BioPuff) and self-sanitizing cosmetic sponge (BioSponge), will be launched later this year.

Filligent develops 'intelligent filtration' technologies designed to combat the transmission of diseases.