KUALA LUMPUR: Global medical technology company Edwards Lifesciences Corp is setting up a regional business hub here and it will be investing RM100mil over the next five years.
The California-based company, with a market capitalisation of US$37bil, has two Malaysian companies which are part of their global suppliers – Supercomal Medical Products Sdn Bhd, which is a subsidiary of Supercomnet Technologies Bhd (Scomnet) as well as SteriPack Asia Sdn Bhd.
“Supercomal has been supplying to Edwards Lifesciences for the last 10 years, and it will continue to be our supplier,” said Edwards Lifesciences corporate vice-president for Japan, Asia and Pacific (JAPAC) Huimin Wang.
“Supercomal and SteriPack, are our global suppliers. We have an existing business relationship with them,” said Edwards Lifesciences vice-president, strategy and marketing for JAPAC Jeremy J. Curtis.
The JAPAC region contributes some US$600mil or 16% to Edwards Lifesciences revenue in 2018. The company made US$3.7bil last year.
The 61-year-old company, which is the first company to develop the commercially viable artificial heart valve, is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
In October 2017, Scomnet announced that it had entered into a shareholder agreement to buy the remaining 80% stake in Supercomal. Prior to the acquisition, Supercomal was a 20% associate company of Scomnet.
It was a related-party transaction, where the vendors of Supercomal were also the major shareholders of Scomnet.
The vendors of Supercomal are its managing director Shiue Jong-Zone, director Wu Chung-Jung, executive director Wu Huei-Chung, Hsueh Chih Yu, Shiue Jyh-Jeh and Lim Eng Guan. Jyh-Jeh is Jong-Zone’s son, while Huei-Chung is Jong-Zone’s wife.
Scomnet completed the acquisition of Supercomal in April 2018.
As the bulk of the acquisition was made via the issuance of new shares, Scomnet’s share base has increased from 243 million to 643 million shares.
Scomnet’s share price has been on an upward trajectory. On a year-to-date basis, the stock is up 70.5% at its last price of 95.5 sen, which could be due to orders from Edwards Lifesciences.
On the regional business hub, Curtis said the Kuala Lumpur office would provide key support functions such as finance, information technology, supply chain, human resource, digital health and marketing across the JAPAC region.
“We choose Malaysia because of the location, highly diverse culture and multilingual population. The talent pool here is highly-educated,” he said.
The business hub is the second for the Edwards Lifesciences after the first which was set up in Prague 10 years ago to cater for the European region.
Over the last five years, more than 3,700 patients in Malaysia had received Edwards Lifesciences’ heart valves or replacement therapies at the National Heart Institute.
Also present at the launching of the business hub were Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Dr Ong Kian Ming and US Ambassador to Malaysia Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir.