Smith & Nephew

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Smith & Nephew plc
Public limited company
Traded asLSESN
FTSE 100 Component
ISINGB0009223206 Edit this on Wikidata
IndustryMedical equipment
Founded1856; 164 years ago (1856)
(Kingston upon Hull)
HeadquartersWatford, United Kingdom
Key people
Revenue$5,138 million (2019)[1]
$815 million (2019)[1]
$600 million (2019)[1]
Number of employees
16,000 (2019)[2]

Smith & Nephew plc is a British multinational medical equipment manufacturing company headquartered in Watford, United Kingdom.[3] It is an international producer of advanced wound management products, arthroscopy products, trauma and clinical therapy products, and orthopaedic reconstruction products.[2] Its products are sold in over 120 countries.[2] It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.


The company was founded in 1856 by Thomas James Smith of Kingston upon Hull who went into business as a dispensing chemist.[4] A few months before his death in 1896, Smith was joined by his nephew, Horatio Nelson Smith, and the business became known as T. J. Smith and Nephew.[4]

In 1928 the company acquired the licence to market and produce the Elastoplast range of bandages. By 1977 the company acquired the pump manufacturer Watson-Marlow Pumps, before selling it to Spirax-Sarco Engineering in 1990.[5] In 1986 it went on to acquire Richards Medical Company, a US specialist in orthopaedic products for £201 million.[4]

In 2002 the company acquired Oratec Interventions, a surgical devices business, for $310 million.[6] It went on to buy Midland Medical Technologies, a hip resurfacing business, for £67 million in 2004.[7]

The company acquired Plus Orthopedics, a Swiss orthopedics business, for US$889 million in April 2007[8] and BlueSky, a US wound care business, for $110 million in May 2007.[9]

In September 2007 Biomet Inc., DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. (part of Johnson & Johnson), Smith & Nephew PLC and Zimmer Holdings Inc. entered into settlement agreements, under which they agree to pay $300 million in total, adopt industry overhauls and undertake corporate monitoring to avoid criminal charges of conspiracy.[10]

The company acquired Healthpoint Biotherapeutics, a specialist in the bioactives area of advanced wound management, for $782 million in December 2012.[11]

In February 2014, Smith & Nephew announced the purchase of ArthroCare for US$1.7 billion in cash. This was seen as a move to broaden the company's sports medicine range for minimally invasive surgery moves the company into the Ear, Nose & Throat market.[12]

In October 2015 Smith & Nephew announced the acquisition of Blue Belt Technologies (led by Eric Timko) for USD $275 million, securing a leading position in the fast-growing area of orthopaedic robotics-assisted surgery.[13]

In March 2019 Smith & Nephew announced the acquisition of orthopedic joint reconstruction business unit of Brainlab to further its foray into robotic surgery.[14]

In June 2019 Smith & Nephew acquired Atracsys Sàrl, the Switzerland-based provider of optical tracking technology used in computer-assisted surgery.[15]

In October 2019, Smith & Nephew announced Nawana would stand down "because his requests for higher pay, in line with the packages awarded by US medical device-makers, could not be met under UK corporate governance standards". He is replaced by Roland Diggelman.[16]


The Smith and Nephew factory in Kingston upon Hull, United Kingdom

Smith & Nephew operates in three market segments through separate global business units under the Smith & Nephew brand name:[17]


In February 2012 Smith & Nephew plc agreed to pay US$22.2 million to settle multiple US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) offenses committed by its US and German subsidiaries.[18] Under the new agreements Smith & Nephew PLC paid $5.4 million in restitution and interest to settle the SEC's civil charges. Its US subsidiary Smith & Nephew Inc. paid a $16.8 million criminal fine.[19] The company admitted to having bribed government-employed doctors in Greece to use its medical equipment over the past decade.[20] The company entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and agreed to retain a compliance monitor for 18 months.[21]


Awards include:

  • Manufacturer of the Year in 2007[22]
  • Smith & Nephew Advanced Wound Management won Logistics and Supply Chain Manufacturer Award 2006[23]
  • ASM International 2005 Engineering Materials Achievement Award for Smith & Nephew's trademarked oxinium technology[24]
  • Smith & Nephew's Back Pain Study Receives Outstanding Paper Award at North American Spine Society 2003 Annual Meeting[25]


  1. ^ a b c "Annual Results 2019" (PDF). Smith & Nephew plc. Retrieved 28 February 2020.
  2. ^ a b c "About us". Smith & Nephew. Retrieved 10 March 2019.
  3. ^ "SNN Profile | Smith & Nephew SNATS, Inc. Comm Stock - Yahoo! Finance". Retrieved 5 September 2012.
  4. ^ a b c "Smith & Nephew History". Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  5. ^ "Watson-Marlow profile". Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  6. ^ "Smith & Nephew to buy Oratec for $310mm in cash". Windhover Information. February 2002. Archived from the original on 18 July 2011. Retrieved 8 March 2009.
  7. ^ "Smith & Nephew buys UK hip resurfacing business". Biomedical Materials. 1 May 2004. Archived from the original on 23 October 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2009 – via Highbeam.
  8. ^ "Smith & Nephew buys Swiss company Plus Orthopedics". Biomedical Materials. 1 April 2007. Archived from the original on 23 October 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2009 – via Highbeam.
  9. ^ "Smith & Nephew buys wound care firm BlueSky for $110m". Independent. 12 May 2007. Retrieved 8 March 2009.
  10. ^ "Biomet stays part of informal SEC probe". Reuters. 11 October 2007. Retrieved 2 August 2008.
  11. ^ "Smith & Nephew to Buy Healthpoint for $782 Million". Bloomberg. 28 November 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2013.
  12. ^ "Smith & Nephew to Buy ArthroCare for $1.7 Billion in Cash". Bloomberg. 3 February 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014.
  13. ^ "Smith & Nephew makes strategic investment in surgical robotics with acquisition of Blue Belt Technologies | Smith & Nephew". Retrieved 11 September 2019.
  14. ^ "Smith & Nephew Acquires Brainlab Orthopaedic Joint Reconstruction Business". Brainlab. Retrieved 11 September 2019.
  15. ^ "Smith & Nephew expands digital surgery ecosystem with acquisition of innovator in optical tracking technology". OrthoFeed. 12 June 2019. Retrieved 11 September 2019.
  16. ^ Kollewe, Julia. "Smith & Nephew chief executive to stand down after pay row". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  17. ^ "Smith & Nephew". The Telegraph. Retrieved 12 April 2017.
  18. ^ The FCPA Blog (6 February 2012). "Smith & Nephew Reaches $22 Million Settlement". The FCPA Blog. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
  19. ^ "Smith & Nephew to pay $22.2M in US settlements". 6 February 2012. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  20. ^ Andrew Jack (6 February 2012). "Smith & Nephew in $22m bribes fine". The Financial Times. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
  21. ^ Office of Public Affairs (6 February 2012). "Medical Device Company Smith & Nephew Resolves Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Investigation". The United States Department of Justice. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
  22. ^ "Smith & Nephew wins manufacturing award". On Target. 2007. Archived from the original on 5 February 2008. Retrieved 2 August 2008.
  23. ^ "Oliver Wright". Archived from the original on 6 January 2009. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
  24. ^ "Smith & Nephew wins award for oxinium technology". Bimedical Materials. 1 November 2005. Archived from the original on 4 November 2012. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
  25. ^ "North American Spine Society 2003 Annual Meeting" (Press release). Smith & Nephew. Archived from the original on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2013.


  1. J Foreman-Peck, Smith & Nephew in the Health Care Industry, Edward Elgar 1995

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