Medical Device & Technology

As a leader in the $48.1 billion orthopedic and biologics industry, our region’s production of medical devices earned Warsaw, Indiana, the title of “Orthopedic Capital of the World.” Our industry leaders include Zimmer Biomet, DePuy Synthes, Medtronic, and more. Our medical-device industry is growing, and your business could be too. 

If you’re looking into expanding your business to the Orthopedic Capital of the World, just let the numbers explain why it makes smart business:

  • Three of the five largest orthopedic device companies in the nation have locations in Northeast Indiana. 
  • Medical-device companies in Northeast Indiana control 39.5 percent of the worldwide orthopedic market. That’s $19 billion in revenue.
  • When combined, the medical-device companies in the Fort Wayne area control:
    • 46 percent of the $7.2 billion worldwide hip market  
    • 49 percent of the $8.7 billion worldwide knee market
    • 48 percent of the $9 billion worldwide spine market
  • Employment in medical equipment and supplies manufacturing is almost 11 times more concentrated in Northeast Indiana than in the rest of the country.
Through hard work and determination we can achieve virtually anything.

A Value Chain of Benefits 

There are logistical advantages and cost savings when joining Northeast Indiana’s medical-device industry. In the Fort Wayne area, we have innovative firms that make up the medical-device value chain. Our medical-device value chain has a place for new business—your business. What is Northeast Indiana’s medical-device industry capable of? Here is the full list:

  • CNC machining
  • Contract manufacturing
  • Healthcare information technology
  • Heat treating
  • Injection molding
  • Milling
  • Prototyping
  • Sterilization
  • Swiss turning
  • Surgical lights
  • Absorption medical nonwovens

Northeast Indiana supplies the following markets:

  • Orthopedic implants
  • Surgical instrumentation
  • Implant cases
  • Orthotics
  • Cardiovascular
  • Endoscopy
  • Implant sterilization
  • Medical-grade wire
  • Orthodontics
  • Injection molding and precision plastics
We know that as the workforce gains confidence and ability, it translates to energy and momentum that builds within the region and the industry.

Innovation Through Entrepreneurship

As a region we are relentlessly reliable, standing on our conviction that through hard work and determination we can achieve virtually anything. It’s this mentality that has seen some of the nation’s greatest medical-technology advancements come to life here. 

Between 2012 and 2016, Warsaw orthopedic companies launched 406 new products clearing FDA regulation. 

Our region recognizes innovation as a key driver of success in the medical-device industry and embraces medical entrepreneurship. Elevate Ventures, a statewide organization and Northeast Indiana strategic partner, nurtures and develops emerging and existing high-potential businesses into high-performing Indiana-based companies. 

Formed in 2009 with initial funding from Lilly Endowment Inc., OrthoWorx is a community-based initiative that works strategically and collaboratively with the orthopedic industry, other life sciences partners, and regional stakeholders to ensure that the region continues to reap the social and economic benefits from its position as the Orthopedic Capital of the World. 

The OrthoWorx Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative facilitates the creation of an innovation pipeline, linking regional and state universities, researchers, clinicians, and inventors to create new products, technologies, companies, and services that drive expansion of the orthopedic cluster. This initiative also seeks to foster entrepreneurship and create the resources required to encourage, create, and support new-company formations. 

Regional innovation through entrepreneurship was key for Micropulse. Founded in 1988 in Columbia City, Micropulse manufactures implants, instruments, and sterilization cases for the orthopedic and cardiovascular market.

Fort Wayne–based company Fort Wayne Metals is an industry leader in the production of fine-grade medical wire. The company creates products for the orthopedic, vascular therapy, cardiac-rhythm management, endoscopy, and orthodontic markets from biocompatible metals such as nitinol, titanium, and other high-performance alloys.

The startup Schwartz Biomedical, also a Fort Wayne success story, provides innovative tissue-engineering solutions to common orthopedic and sports medicine challenges.

Drawing on more than two decades as an industry leader from its Canadian facility, Iotron Industries expanded to the U.S. market with the opening of its new state-of-the-art IMPELA® electron-beam processing facility in Columbia City in 2012. The new $15.3 million facility provides contract sterilization, materials modification, and microbial reduction for the orthopedic, medical-device, agribusiness, and commercial-defense industries.

OrthoPediatrics is the only company focused exclusively on pediatric orthopedics and committed to the cause of improving the lives of children with orthopedic conditions. In the hands of skilled surgeons, our products can relieve the pain of children who are confined to a wheelchair, while enabling others to walk for the first time.

An Educated Workforce for the Future

Northeast Indiana not only supports businesses in our reliable and steady medical-device industry, but we also focus on developing a pipeline of talent for employers. We know that as the workforce gains confidence and ability, it translates to energy and momentum that builds within the region and the industry. 

OrthoWorx’s Education & Workforce Development Initiative enhances the local educational offerings to meet the academic needs of students and employers and to make the community more attractive for the recruitment and retention of employees.

Beyond Orthoworx, our higher-education institutions fill the talent pipeline for this industry. 

Just take a look at our training and higher-education institutions:  

  • Purdue University Fort Wayne offers a Bachelor of Science with a biomedical engineering concentration. 
  • Purdue University, located within two hours of Northeast Indiana, is a leader in undergraduate and graduate programs with the success of its Weldon School of Biomechanical Engineering.
  • Ivy Tech Community College is the nation’s largest statewide community college and offers the Orthopedic Quality Standards and Technical Skills Certificate Program for students seeking advanced manufacturing skills development. The program is offered at the 20,000-square-foot Orthopedic and Advanced Manufacturing Training Center (OAMTC) for CNC machining in Warsaw.
  • Trine University in Angola offers undergraduate programs in design engineering technology, chemical and bioprocess engineering, and a graduate program in biomedical engineering and biomaterials.
  • Grace College, located just west of Northeast Indiana, was the nation’s first college to launch a graduate program in orthopedic regulatory and clinical affairs. It also offers numerous health science and engineering undergraduate programs.
  • Indiana Tech’s undergraduate program in biomedical engineering focuses on mechanics and includes the use of electrical sensors for the brain-machine control interface and the development of simulation programs.
  • Northeast Indiana currently boasts eight STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math)-focused New Tech schools.

By the Numbers

Medical Device & Technology - Employment and Wages

Source: Emsi 2018.2; QCEW

Medical Device & Technology - Major Employers

Source: 2017.2 Community Research Institute at IPFW. Content republished with permission from Orthoworld,

Our medical-device companies work selflessly to help people, and we do the same for businesses in our region. If you’re ready to consider doing business in Northeast Indiana, find out more about what it’s like to do business here.

Learn More