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Press Release

Smith and Nephew invests USD$55 million in new advanced medical manufacturing plant

OCTOBER 26th 2016

British company expands operations in the country and expects to create up to 250 new jobs in the next two years.

San Jose, Costa Rica, October 26th, 2016. - The global medical device company, Smith and Nephew (NYSE: SNN; LSE: SN) inaugurated today its new manufacturing facility for sports medicine orthopedic devices in Zona Franca Coyol, Alajuela.

The new facility required an investment of USD$55 million and will add 250 jobs to the 1,700 existing ones, with which the British firm, based in London, will consolidate a total of 1,950 jobs in Costa Rica.
 
The President of Costa Rica, Luis Guillermo Solis, as well as government and company´s representatives attended the event.
 
"The Government of Costa Rica is pleased to inaugurate Smith & Nephew´s new plant in Coyol, with capacity to increase its operation up to 250 new jobs. This is the result of the country´s efforts to strengthen the competitiveness thanks to the strong partnership we have with productive and business sectors. Costa Rica is a stable and growing economy, it has low inflation, occupies the top positions in rankings of competitiveness, and Smith & Nephew´s expansion consolidates its operation and our country in its capability to attract foreign investment," said Luis Guillermo Solis Rivera, President of Costa Rica.

In the market for sports medicine, Smith and Nephew specializes in manufacturing of instruments and implants required to perform minimally invasive surgeries. This includes the repair of soft tissue injuries and degenerative disorders of knees, hip and shoulders.

"The manufacturing sector, especially the medical devices, is essential in the process of diversification and consolidation of Costa Rica in global value chains (GVC), its impact on the country´s exports and, investment and reinvestment rates are outstanding. Costa Rica has organized itself to be a partner able to respond to the companies´ requirements, both in terms of talent and human skill, as in business climate and incentive schemes. These conditions converge as enablers of a productive ecosystem less organized around the assembling, and more focused on manufacturing activities of higher value-added, higher technology content and productive sophistication and business, as well as complex research, development and innovation activities. It is in this scenario that Smith & Nephew makes the decision to expand its local operations, demonstrating the commitment and rooting of the company with Costa Rica, as well as the country's potential. From the Central Government, we will continue to work hard to cultivate and maintain the appropriate conditions for the development of the company in the country; as rector of this sector and representative of the executive branch I commit with the company these efforts in my capacity," said Alexander Mora, Minister of Foreign Trade.

Since 2014, Smith and Nephew strengthened its position in the sports medicine market with the acquisition of ArthroCare Corporation. The transaction added complementary products to its existing portfolio and manufacturing experience in Costa Rica. The new facility in Coyol replaces the previous plant in Heredia.

The new plant will support global demand for COBLATION technology developed by Smith and Nephew. COBLATION is a type of technology used in arthroscopic procedures, which is characterized by using radiofrequency energy to remove tissue, causing less damage to the body and almost no bleeding. 

Jorge Sequeira, Managing Director of CINDE, said "Smith & Nephew is part of the growing sector of Life Sciences which last year exported US$2.2 billion in medical devices and for this year is projected that the exports of these devices will close in US$2.5 billion. We are sure that Smith & Nephew will continue to grow in the country, taking advantage of our great human talent to develop their successful operation."

"Sports medicine is a rapidly growing market where unmet clinical needs give space for technology and procedural innovation," said Olivier Bohuon, CEO of Smith and Nephew. "We are proud of the opening of our new building in Costa Rica, which, together with our facilities in the United States will give us the manufacturing platform necessary to support the expansion of our business in the new field of sports medicine."

In this regard, Andrés Salazar, General Manager and Vice President of Operations for Smith and Nephew in Costa Rica, said: "The opening of the new manufacturing facility will strengthen the company's operations in the country. From the new facilities, the company´s employees will manufacture medical devices that improve the health of hundreds of people around the world. We are very proud of this new phase that begins today."

Smith and Nephew is looking to hire staff in manufacturing, engineering and supply chain. Interested candidates can send their resume to eduardo.ramos@smith-nephew.com.
 
About Smith & Nephew
Smith & Nephew is a global medical technology business dedicated to helping healthcare professionals improve people's lives. With leadership positions in Orthopaedic Reconstruction, Advanced Wound Management, Sports Medicine and Trauma & Extremities, Smith & Nephew has over 15,000 employees and a presence in more than 100 countries. Annual sales in 2015 were more than $4.6 billion. Smith & Nephew is a member of the FTSE100 (LSE: SN, NYSE: SNN).

For more information about Smith & Nephew, please visit our corporate website www.smith-nephew.com, follow @SmithNephewplc on Twitter or visit SmithNephewplc on Facebook.com