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First Stage Of Medtronic’s $96.2 Million Investment In Juncos To Begin Operations

All facilities integrated under Medtronic Puerto Rico Operations Co. as controlled foreign corporation


February 5, 2004
Copyright © 2004 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

Medtronic Med-Rel Inc. on Tuesday will inaugurate its new $35.2 million, 104,000-square-foot plant in Juncos, where some 400 employees will be manufacturing medical devices to manage cardiac rhythms for distribution in the U.S., Canada, and Latin America.

The company has already begun construction of a $61 million, 120,000-square-foot expansion to manufacture diabetes, neurological, and neurosurgery products. In 2001, Med-Rel paid the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Co. (Pridco) $2.4 million for 16 acres in Juncos. Once the plant is fully operational, its work force could reach 250.

At the 45,000-square-foot Humacao plant vacated by Med-Rel, a staff of seven is running a pilot program to produce screws for spinal correction applications. The project is for Sofamor Danek, a Medtronic business unit. If successful, the plant’s expansion could mean more capital investment and jobs.

Medtronic also has an operation in Villalba, which recently underwent a $28 million, 150,000-square-foot expansion and added 300 jobs to its work force of 900. More than 700,000 electrodes for pacemakers are manufactured at the three-building complex each year, along with catheters and neurological products.

"Med-Rel’s operational transfer is 75% ready, after the U.S. Food & Drug Administration certified our plant in November," said Med-Rel Senior Director & Plant Manager Adalberto Rivera. "We are now in the process of equipment installing qualification, after which the plant will begin normal operations."

Med-Rel manufactures cardiac resynchronization, neurostimulation, chronic pain, and bladder control systems. Its most popular products are pacemakers and defibrillators, such as the Gem III AT medical device implanted in U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney in 2001. Most of the company’s equipment and machinery is manufactured in a 30,000-square-foot clean room in the center of the facility.

Operational lineup changes

In 2001, Medtronic’s plants in Puerto Rico were integrated into a single controlled foreign corporation operating as Medtronic Puerto Rico Operations Co. (MPROC). The company now shares administrative and services support, with Manuel Santiago as senior director & general manager of MPROC.

Among the MPROC officers are Angus McMichael, director of human resources; Gloria Ruiz, director of finance; and Ramonita Rivera, senior administrative assistant. Control of Medtronic’s plant operations in Puerto Rico remains in the hands of Rivera (Juncos), German Torres (Villalba), and Sal Aloma (Humacao-Sofamor Danek).

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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