The medical device business isn’t as much fun as it used to be. Products are aging, and increasingly more difficult to differentiate. Market success has attracted more competitors. Regulatory requirements are increasing the costs and time to develop new products. Advertising and selling costs are also skyrocketing. And payers are demanding hard clinical and health economic data to justify product pricing.

Flattening growth curves and declining profitability are now the more typical result. Many companies have responded by refining their product development and commercialization processes, with an emphasis on speed to market and efficient product development. The real problems lie in front of this process. The winners in this market storm are going to have to develop a discipline and process to strategically manage a product portfolio, making better decisions as to the projects that even go into the development and commercialization stage.

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