Warsaw, Indiana has earned the title of the “Orthopedic Capital of the World®” due to its remarkable concentration of orthopedic design and manufacturing companies, many of which started and remain in the area to this day. With approximately 13,000 people employed in the orthopedic industry, Warsaw represents a third of the world’s orthopedic manufacturing, including almost two-thirds of hip and knee manufacturing.
It all began in 1895, when a chemist and pharmaceutical salesman named Revra DePuy came up with the idea to create customized fiber splints for patients while staying at the Hayes Hotel in downtown Warsaw. He founded the DePuy Manufacturing Company in Warsaw because of its advantageous location near major railroads for nationwide distribution.
The apple falls from the tree and creates more trees
As the company grew, a team of salesmen joined the business, including Justin O. Zimmer. In 1927, Zimmer founded his own orthopedic company due to his dissatisfaction with the lack of technological advancements in the industry. The manufacturing hub for Zimmer was originally in the basement of Zimmer’s house, but the company rapidly expanded after relocating to North Detroit Street.
In 1977, four former Zimmer employees started Biomet, Inc. in Warsaw, with the goal of setting a new standard of quality and clinical durability in the orthopedic industry. Biomet became a worldwide leader in the medical device industry and broke ground on its current facility in 1980. Zimmer later acquired Biomet in 2014, and the company is now known as Zimmer Biomet.
Other orthopedic companies that call Warsaw home include Deo Volente Orthopedics (DVO), which was founded in 2002 by a former DePuy distributor and was eventually purchased by Tornier in 2007. Tornier merged with Wright Medical in 2015 and has kept the Warsaw location as the headquarters for Upper Extremity R&D.
OrthoPediatrics, founded in 2006 by local orthopedic executives, focuses on orthopedic implants for children and is one of the leaders in the orthopedic pediatric market. Nextremity Solutions, which moved its headquarters from New Jersey to Warsaw in 2013, focuses on musculoskeletal product development and commercialization.
In 2017, Ignite Orthopedics joined the growing list of orthopedic companies in downtown Warsaw. Other companies in the area include Wishbone Medical, Medtronic, Tecomet, Precision Medical, B&M, Avalign, Rayco, Paragon, Recon Co., Instrumedical Technologies, Inc., Danco, Banner Medical, Micropulse, and NN Precision Engineered Products. Together, these companies have cemented Warsaw’s status as the “Orthopedic Capital of the World”.