Getting an Inside Look: Given Imaging’s Camera Pill

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Getting an Inside Look: Given Imaging’s Camera Pill
Gavriel Iddan was an electro optical engineer and was working on developing the technology behind the “eye” of a guided missile. After his talks with Dr. Scapa, he conceptualized the concept of a tiny camera to view the small intestine. The device would be propelled by the peristaltic motion of the intestine. The development of promising new CMOS technology was going to help with the problem of low battery life. In 1994 the idea was presented to Gavriel Meron, CEO of Applitec Ltd., who responded positively and founded GIVEN Imaging to market the device. The team later collaborated with a team of scientists from the UK. This led to a series of positive clinical trials, experiments and finally an IPO raising $60 million. After the IPO the device was wildly successful and by Feb 2006 had helped more than 300,000 patients. Competitors started popping up by 2005 and this led GIVEN Imaging aggressively marketing its product and consolidating its market position.
A strength of the device was that it helped the doctor develop a painless diagnosis of the patients’ illness. A weakness was that, the current technology, Charged Couple Devices, only provided a battery life of 10 minutes which was insufficient to view the complete small intestine.
Opportunities included an unexplored segment of the market for GIVEN Imaging to tap into. The development of new technologies like CMOS promised a much longer battery life of upto 6 hours. Gavriel Iddan was fortunate to collaborate with a team from the UK, who were working on the same technology (wireless endoscopy). CCD technology didn’t allow enough battery life to view the entire small intestine. New competitors like Olympus and Phillips research which developed similar products, were a significant threat to GIVEN’s position in the market.
In conclusion, GIVEN Imaging were able…...

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