Case Study

EDAP: Promoting the adoption of an innovative prostate cancer therapy

29 pages
June 2008
Reference: IMD-3-2000

In January 2008, EDAP’s CEO Marc Oczachowski and CFO Eric Soyer were elated after raising $20million in capital from US investors. This cash infusion would fund the US-based clinical trials for EDAP’s revolutionary prostate cancer therapy. They were pivotal for EDAP to reach its goal of reaching US FDA approval, a fundamental condition for the company’s growth in the world’s largest prostate cancer market. But EDAP’s executives were fully aware of their shareholders’ pressure to see further growth and acceptance of HIFU’s (High Intensity Focused Ultrasound) as a “standard of care” therapy for non-invasive prostate cancer treatment in Europe. Within the past decade, EDAP had made significant progress in capturing the interest from the urological medical community and increasing the number of sites using its technology and of patients treated satisfactorily. However, market penetration for HIFU still faced specific issues: Its status as an experimental therapy, reluctance of urologists to adopt a new technology over surgery, competition from other technologies and treatment protocols, conservative attitudes from the health reimbursement agencies, and EDAP’s major resource constraints. Management was confronted with two types of challenges. In the short to medium term, the company needed to imagine innovative ways to accelerate the adoption of its technology in European and neighboring markets. This was necessary to reach profitability before the large US market would kick in and propel the company forward. In the longer term, EDAP had to determine the most desirable growth path beyond its current prostate cancer activities. Should the company define itself and try to grow as a urology company? As a HIFU cancer treatment specialist? Or more broadly as a therapeutic ultrasound specialist?

Learning Objective

To examine and contemplate how a company gears their efforts to get a new medical technology embraced before it is a standard of care. The strategy is complex as gaining acceptance and use of an innovative medical technology requires the interest and adoption or multiple parties: the medical community, patients and the reimbursement agencies. Simultaneously, the company must manage and meet the expectations of their shareholders and keep the company’s efforts focused on growth and profitability.

Prostate Cancer, Medical Technology, High Intensity Focused Ultrasound, Standard of Care, Medical Device, Research and Development
Field Research
© 2008
Available Languages
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