The idea had been sprouting for a few years, but the COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced the conviction of several companies in the region on the need to create a structure bringing together manufacturers and subcontractors of medical devices. The HealthCare Loire Valley association was officially launched on May 19, 2021, during a constitutive general meeting led by the pilot companies of the project: The Surgical Company, Vermon and Vlad. This new network of companies wants to contribute to the organization and development of the medical device sector in the Centre-Val de Loire region.
Developing new economic synergies in the Centre-Val de Loire
Meet to get to know each other better, discuss strategic axes for the sector, consider new trade relations and thus strengthen the regional economic dynamic. The HealthCare Loire Valley association was launched today at the instigation of three companies in the medical devices sector and their representatives — Nicolas Felix, Vermon's scientific advisor; Emmanuel Hallauer, R&D Director The Surgical Company (Endovision) and Jean-Louis Jarry, President of Vlad — in the presence of several regional personalities.
If the idea of creating a collective of medical device companies had already been mentioned, the health crisis will have highlighted the need to structure this booming regional sector. The multiplication of calls for projects Stop COVID or as part of the national plan France Relance has thus encouraged health companies to mobilize, to review their manufacturing process to respond to the challenges of the health crisis, to work in synergy but also to meet new economic challenges such as industrial relocation in France and Europe.
A place of exchange and reflection for medical equipment manufacturers and the network of subcontractors, this association — supported at its launch by DEV'UP, the economic development agency of the Centre-Val de Loire region — covers different fields of intervention: the exchange of good practices around key themes for the sector (human resources, regulation, supply chain, industry 4.0 , innovation...) to develop skills and competitiveness, the deployment of new synergies in order to promote the development of the regional sector or the promotion of know-how and skills present in the Centre-Val de Loire at national and international level. The association wants to support the attractiveness of the territory in terms of investments and recruitment of new talents.
A call to come together
Nearly thirty companies in the Centre-Val de Loire have already shown interest in joining this new collective, out of the hundred or so establishments and subcontractors identified on the territory. During a survey conducted by DEV'UP in the 1st quarter of 2021 among companies in the sector (see the attached document), 70% of respondents considered as a "priority" the creation of an interconnection with the local and regional fabric. To join the association, future members must meet two essential criteria:
have a legal entity located in the Centre-Val de Loire region and a permanent staff on the establishment in the region;
fall within the field of activities of medical technologies (manufacturers, designers, integrators of medical devices, health equipment, suppliers of dedicated systems and components) or fall within the field of subcontracting (at least 25% of its turnover dedicated to the medical technology sector and / or contribute to the provision of technological solutions to the entire sector).
Young companies under three years old, without turnover or employee, can also apply to join the HealthCare Loire Valley.
All companies in the region that would like to join the initiative can send a message.
Creation of an identification and connection platform
Among the first actions implemented by the HealthCare Loire Valley, the association will put online, in the coming weeks, its website: https://healthcare.loirevalley.co/ . Showcase of the actions carried out by the association and the news of the sector, this website will include a platform for identification and interaction between members. This digital tool of connection, reserved exclusively for members, will make it possible to geolocate the member companies of the HealthCare Loire Valley according to different categories: the nature of the activity (manufacturer, subcontractor ...), their skills or the typology of finished products. This identification of the know-how present on the territory will make it possible to match the offers and requests between members, according to their needs, and thus to develop new commercial partnerships in local circuit.
The association also works on the development of various collective projects. This year, four thematic events are planned around the following topics: Human resources and jobs – Industry 4.0 – Subcontracting and supply chain – Quality and Regulation.
The health industry is a priority sector in the Centre-Val de Loire with 107 establishments identified in the territory. Although the production of medicines represents 59 pharmaceutical establishments and employs 10,200 people, the medical device sector is not to be outdone. The 48 medical device manufacturers in the Territory employ 2,894 people.
In his study " 10 industrial sectors of excellence in the Centre-Val de Loire ", DEV'UP points out that companies in this medium-sized and dynamic sector are often positioned in niche markets and therefore less competitive. Innovation, which is very present in this field of activity, thus presents new growth prospects for these companies.