Ottobock strengthens the leading position in prosthetics

September 26, 2017


Acquisition of Freedom Innovations expands market share in the USA and closes attractive gap in the product portfolio

DUDERSTADT/IRVINE. The German global market leader in technical orthopaedics continues to build on its leading position in the field of prosthetics. Otto Bock HealthCare GmbH is taking a key step forwards by acquiring Freedom Innovations from its previous owner, private equity company Health Evolution Partners (HEP). The two parties signed a binding purchase agreement on 22 September in Irvine, California.

“Unique opportunities simply have to be taken. Together, Ottobock and Freedom Innovations – the number one and the number three on the American market – will benefit from their combined sales power and portfolios. Integrating the company into the global Ottobock family offers significant advantages; we will be able to generate synergies and take Freedom Innovations to the next level thanks to the strength of our global sales network,” says Prof. Hans Georg Näder, President of Otto Bock HealthCare GmbH. “Users will benefit from an even broader spectrum of innovative systems in prosthetics and a full pipeline of new products, thanks to our combined development expertise. Employees at Freedom Innovations will become part of a large, successful company. And our growth strategy will be bolstered by a great brand that will also further strengthen our presence in North America.”

Freedom Innovations and Ottobock share a passion for innovative solutions, Quality for Life, human mobility and independency.

Freedom Innovations is the number three in the field of prosthetics in the USA. Sales in North America account for three quarters of the Californian company’s turnover. Freedom Innovations employs more than 150 people around the world. Its European headquarters are based in Enschede, Netherlands.

“Ottobock is the ideal partner for us,” says Maynard C. Carkhuff, newly appointed chairman of Freedom Innovations. “No other company can offer users and employees anything comparable. We’re excited to be sharing our journey with Ottobock in the future.”

Dave Reissfelder, who has headed the Ottobock subsidiary BionX in Boston to date, has been appointed as the new CEO. “I’m really looking forward to being a part of Freedom Innovations,” Reissfelder says. “Together with the employees, the management team and Ottobock, we’ll make the company flourish.”

Ottobock took over the company and all of its locations and employees on 22 September 2017. The well-established Freedom Innovations brand will continue to be used. Anti-trust matters have already been clarified and a “simultaneous signing and closing” was carried out. The details of the purchase contract are subject to confidentiality provisions. With its Roadmap 22 strategy, Ottobock is pursuing dynamic growth. Together with our Swedish partner EQT, which holds a 20% stake in Otto Bock HealthCare GmbH, the Näder family is working to enhance the company’s agility and value creation even further over the mid- and long-term. Otto Bock Holding GmbH & Co. KG is owned 100% by the Näder family. The holding company holds an 80 per cent share in Otto Bock HealthCare GmbH. “We are currently setting our course for the future, thanks to our recent ‘generation change 4.0’, and today by further building on our leading position in the field of prosthetics,” says Prof. Näder. “This will enable us to offer even better solutions and therefore even better Quality for Life for our users in the future. We are working full speed ahead and with great enthusiasm on our next major steps, including intuitive control systems and pattern recognition.”

Media contact:
Head of Investor Relations / Corporate Communications
Mark C. Schneider
Otto Bock HealthCare GmbH, Ebertstraße 15a, 10117 Berlin
Phone: +49 (0) 30 398 206 222 / mobile: +49 (0) 151 146 591 35