SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. — To say that LifeModeler, Inc. (LMI) bucked the prevailing trend and posted a series of successes in 2008 that are providing a platform for even greater accomplishments this year, wouldn’t quite be telling the whole story. This past year will actually be considered the most formative for the young company, as it literally expanded its presence in every category-from revenue and customer growth, to staff enhancement, to university teaching programs, and even to helping put men on Mars. It also launched-and quickly closed-an outside funding offer that was oversubscribed within weeks.
As the leading global provider of biomechanical human body simulation tools and services, LMI is well-positioned to grow its business in an otherwise down economic environment. The company, by relying on highly sophisticated proprietary biomechanical engineering software, has focused on providing the leading medical device makers of human joint replacements with a quicker, more complete method of product development.
Millions of adults each year cross that boundary where joint replacement surgeries are less a “want” than a “need.” Keeping pace with people’s desire to maintain a high degree of mobility for active sports involvement-or just basic mobility-is a task that the major device makers take seriously.
LMI works with five of the top six orthopedic companies, and they are intent on enabling an aging population to “gracefully adjust to the realities of physical stresses placed on joints,” said LMI’s CEO and founder, Shawn McGuan.
Replacement joint development, and subsequent production, is a costly undertaking. LMI’s unique software allows product designers to perform “virtual prototyping,” essentially evaluating new product concepts in a validated, computer model of a human body-before they undertake expensive physical prototype development.
According to McGuan, “our software can literally shave months and millions of dollars off the cost of getting new orthopedic implants to market.”
The company has seen every aspect of its business grow in the past year. “We’re now doing work for five of the top six joint replacement makers and we’ve expanded our professional staff to accommodate their needs, as well as our own efforts to grow the business in some new directions, including a focus on the surgical theater environment,” said McGuan.
He said the next frontier in operating room technology will be to enable the surgeon to use computer technology to adjust and personalize implants to suit individual patient needs.
McGuan has bolstered his staff nearly four-fold, adding more mechanical engineers and clinical specialists holding medical degrees.
“Our ability to continue to grow will be dependent on responding to the needs of a very specialized market, and it’s important that we have the personnel to not only answer the questions, but be on the leading edge of developing new ways to support our key markets,” said McGuan.
Revenue growth at LMI kept pace with the staff expansion. McGuan said the company nearly doubled its 2007 revenue this past year.
One of the more significant-and personally satisfying results of the growth spurt-was the success of LMI’s first private offering. Given the economy’s sluggish performance, McGuan was pleasantly surprised to find such a strong and immediate response to the offering. Expecting several months of placement activities in conjunction with the venture capital firm he works with, McGuan saw the offering oversubscribed within a matter of weeks.
“This response reaffirmed for our management team that we are on the right path, and that our future holds opportunities that will allow us to expand our core business while also applying our unique technology to new applications,” said McGuan.
He continues to support close relationships with major university biomechanical programs both here and overseas. McGuan firmly believes in the need to help educate and develop the people who will be major contributors to much of the next generation of software-supported advances. LMI works with the university programs to assure that students are trained with the company’s signature LifeMOD(TM) software, and it has even made large endowments recently.
Both the Shiley Center for Orthopaedic Research and Education at the Scripps Clinic in La Jolla, Calif., and the InMotion Muskuloskeletal Institute associated with the University of Memphis in Tennessee have received software endowments this year, which together amount to nearly $1 million. McGuan sees expansion of these support programs as being key to maintaining his industry leadership positioning.
What could me more indicative of that industry strength than being called upon to help NASA put men on Mars?
LMI’s software is integral to the space agency’s determinations as to how large a weight load astronauts are able to handle under differing circumstances in a weightless environment. The company has worked with NASA for a few years and 2008 saw the program grow even further. The LifeMOD software is applied to development procedures for both Mars and lunar landing projects.
Back on earth, the company CEO sees no let-up in the pace that he and his staff have set in the past year. He indicated that LMI’s presence at major industry and trade events and shows will be expanded to include involvement with events in Europe and Asia, as well as the important shows here in the U.S.
“We’re very fortunate to be able to apply a unique technology to many product development areas that will ultimately help untold numbers of people-and that isn’t restricted to this country,” he said.
LifeModeler, Inc. can be contacted at 949-366-6829, and additional information on the company and its products can be found at http://www.lifemodeler.com.
Send2Press(R) is the originating wire service for this story, Copr. 2009.
[tags]LifeModeler Inc, LifeMOD software, human body simulation tools, virtual prototyping[/tags]