Gyrus looks a winner in cutting-edge technology

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The Independent Online

Gyrus describes itself as a "laser razor blades" company, providing hi-tech keyhole surgery equipment, machines and blades that can cut and seal tissue as they go. It is a small player in a giant market, but it is navigating the bumpy road from development-focused start-up to significant player.

Gyrus describes itself as a "laser razor blades" company, providing hi-tech keyhole surgery equipment, machines and blades that can cut and seal tissue as they go. It is a small player in a giant market, but it is navigating the bumpy road from development-focused start-up to significant player.

It is gradually building its own salesforce and gradually extending its product range. It has specialisms in gynaecology and ear, nose and throat surgery, but has been slow to crack the much bigger general surgery market. That failure was being rewritten yesterday as caution, and caution is indeed the right policy when rivals include the mighty Johnson & Johnson and Tyco.

Gyrus has a management that can be trusted. Its success in all but eradicating debt is just one piece of evidence of its attention to the fundamentals of cash control and efficiency. It has found it can sell its machines, rather than needing to give them away and rely entirely on profits from the blades.

This column has long seen Gyrus as a long-term winner (or a medium-term takeover target), although six months ago we advised waiting before getting on board. The shares have stayed flat since but it is now making unambiguous progress.

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