Rumor has it that Varian is acquiring Dunlee, a division of Philips Healthcare. If a consolidation of these two x-ray tube giants is confirmed, a significant shift in the medical x-ray tube industry can be expected. Here are some points for the market to consider…
Proprietary X-ray Tube Market?
Varian and Dunlee currently compete in creating aftermarket replacement tubes that dramatically decrease the market pricing of proprietary tubes. Both companies also make the proprietary tubes exclusively for the OEMs. If these companies consolidate, without a competitor bringing the market price down, this could potentially slow down the release of aftermarket tubes if they choose to work more exclusively with manufacturers to build and maintain proprietary-only tubes. Would Varian ownership of Dunlee mean an end to new aftermarket tubes?
AfterMarket X-ray Tube Prices
Even if aftermarket tubes continued to present themselves from Varian in the years to come, with less competition from alternative aftermarket providers, Varian would have the ability to hold much stronger on prices for new aftermarket tubes.
Current X-ray Tube Opportunity
If Varian purchases Dunlee, it would certainly fire up the used tube market in a fresh new way. Low-use tubes with very late manufacturing dates, and rebuilt x-ray tubes would be even more appealing to tube buyers looking to save significant dollars.
Future Outlook on the X-ray Tube Market
From a technology perspective, a consolidated Varian and Dunlee R&D effort could lead to some fascinating new technologies for manufacturers to put into future imaging equipment.
What Do You Think About a Possible Varian/Dunlee Acquisition?
It’s your turn to weigh in on the possibility of a Varian/Dunlee purchase. How do you think this would impact our industry?
UPDATE, February 2014:
While it turns out this deal came close to happening, it has since fallen through. There are no known plans for Varian to purchase Dunlee at this time. We at Block Imaging think very highly of both these organizations and are thrilled to see that they both are expected to thrive in this industry for the foreseeable future!