The technology and application of medical devices have evolved immensely as health care has advanced. According to Wolters Kluwer, the global medical device market in 2020 was valued at $456.9 billion and is expected to continue growing steadily for the foreseeable future. The Jacksonville region has been one of the key geographies in the expansion of medical device manufacturing.
Northeast Florida has long been known as a center of growth, opportunity and leadership for the health care sector. The area is home to one of three Mayo Clinics, an MD Anderson Cancer Center, the UF Proton Therapy Institute and cutting-edge health care-related companies including Medtronic, McKesson, Availity and Forcura, among many others. In recent years, hospital systems have invested more than $1.7 billion in facility and service expansion to meet the needs of the population growth in the region and their collective advancement of patient care.
Medical device manufacturers such as Zimmer Biomet, Medtronic, KLS Martin Group, Thermo Fisher Scientific and Treace Medical Concepts have a meaningful presence within the Jacksonville region, relying on the area’s strong infrastructure and talent base. Medtronic, one of the largest medical device companies in the world, significantly expanded its Jacksonville-based Ear, Nose and Throat headquarters in the last decade while growing through acquisitions as well as five product launches in recent months. KLS Martin Group, a global leader in innovative surgical technology manufacturing, added a new training center to its North American operations in Jacksonville last year. The training center is designed for an innovative exchange of ideas among physicians, engineers and other employees, and includes a bio-skills laboratory on the campus.
Johnson & Johnson Vision, one of the top employers in Jacksonville, recently added 100 new jobs to its Jacksonville-based divisional headquarters, in addition to its current 1,800+ workforce, and has increased the dominance of Northeast Florida’s life sciences industry. Through this expansion, Johnson & Johnson Vision will establish a medical device laboratory development center and plans to add five new production lines and create a division-wide Center of Excellence for 3D printing.
Two attributes for the region’s rise of medical device manufacturing are the access to skilled talent and a low-cost tax climate. With a skilled health care workforce of more than 90,000, employment growth in Jacksonville in the health and biomedical industry continues to outpace the national average. Local health and biomedical companies cite the benefits of having top-notch curriculum for their field with the leading educational institutes of University of North Florida, Jacksonville University and Florida State College of Jacksonville. As the closest major city to University of Florida and Florida State University, companies can further tap into the growing talent base of skilled health care and tech graduates.
The tax environment also provides one of the most favorable for both businesses and individuals alike. Florida continues to be one of the top states in which to do business with no state income tax, no sales and use tax on goods manufactured or produced in Florida for export outside the state and no sales/use tax on co-generation of electricity.
With a growing health care industry and skilled talent, a strong base of operations and numerous and meaningful tax benefits coupled with a lifestyle that is unmatched, the Jacksonville region is well positioned to bolster growth of medical device manufacturers and will continue to be a critical ecosystem for health care.
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