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Compression Dynamics: In Search of Sales

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biotechnology management case

Anne S. York1 and Martin Winkler2
1College of Business, Creighton University; 2University of Nebraska Medical Center and Creighton University Medical Center

Summary and key issue/decision: The Compression Dynamics case describes an inventor faced with developing a startup after several rejected licensing offers. Determined to bootstrap, vascular surgeon Dr. Martin Winkler identified target markets for his EdemaWearŽ compression stockinet. Over the first two years, a lack of sales through his primary marketing channel, an internet website, surprised Winkler. The case addresses licensing and startup differences, bootstrapping pros and cons, and marketing channels required to bring a medical product to a range of non-medical target markets.

Companies/institutions: Compression Dynamics, Inc.

Technology: EdemaWear is the name for a class of compression products which utilize a patented elastic yarn which can be made into various compression garments.

Stage of development at time of issue/decision: The product, for which the patent has issues, falls into the FDA classification of Class I and II devices, that is either not regulated or required to show substantial equivalence. Surgical applications (kidney dialysis and post-vascular or breast surgery), because of the sterilization requirements, fall into Class II, while non-surgical applications (distance running, cellulite appearance reduction), because they are not used in a medical setting involving open wounds, fall into Class I.

Indication/therapeutic area: Class I and II medical devices for athletic muscular recover, cellulite appearance reduction, post-stint surgery, and post-vascular or breast surgery to reduce swelling, promote more rapid healing, and lessen the chance of recurrence.

Geography: US, with potential international markets.

Keywords: medical devices, vascular compression, market segmentation, marketing and selling channels, edema, product line extensions

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