Deluxe Corp., Shoreview, has acquired PartnerUp, a Minneapolis-based online networking community for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Terms were not disclosed. The acquisition is aligned with Deluxe's continued focus on creating a strategic portfolio of services and products that spans the full small business workflow.NEW PRODUCTS
Medtronic Inc., Fridley, has begun a U.S. arm of an 8,800-patient randomized clinical trial called Protect, which compares its drug-coated stent, Endeavor, and a stent made by Johnson & Johnson, called Cypher, using key safety metrics, including potentially fatal blood clots. A team at Doctors Hospital in Edinburg, Texas, enrolled the first U.S. patient in the study, which was begun in May 2007 with the first implants in Europe. Currently, about 5,500 patients are enrolled. Three-year data on all patients are expected by 2012.
CVRx Inc., a Minneapolis medical device company, has completed a fifth round of private equity financing totaling $84 million. The company has developed the Rheos System, an implantable device designed to control hypertension, or high blood pressure. CVRx plans to use the funding to complete the hypertension pivotal trial, as well as for product development and building a sales and marketing organization in anticipation of product launch. New Enterprise Associates Inc. and Johnson & Johnson Development Corp. were the co-lead investors.
ProUroCare Medical Inc., Minneapolis, has entered into two agreements with Aartann Laboratories Inc. of Trenton, N.J., to complete development, conduct clinical trials and file for FDA regulatory clearance on the company's ProUroScan prostate imaging system. These agreements also grant to each party license rights and expand the working relationship of the two companies to include development and licensing of future generations of the ProUroScan system.NEW BUSINESS
Lawson Software, St. Paul, signed a multi-suite contract with Lafayette (La.) Consolidated Government. The government licensed Lawson QuickStep Government and the Lawson S3 Enterprise Financial Management, Human Capital Management and Supply Chain Management suites to help reduce administrative costs and improve employee access to information.
Digi-Key Corp., Thief River Falls, Minn., and Laird Technologies have entered into a global distribution agreement. Laird Technologies is a designer and manufacturer of customized, performance-critical products for wireless and other advanced electronics applications.
A federal appeals court agreed to review a three-judge panel's grant of a new insider-trading trial to former Qwest Communications International Inc. CEO Joseph Nacchio. The U.S. Justice Department asked the full 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in Denver, to review a decision by three of its members throwing out Nacchio's April 2007 conviction.PERSONNEL MOVES
Minnesota Hospital Association, St. Paul, named Lawrence (Lorry) Massa as its new president. Massa was most recently CEO at Rice Memorial Hospital in Willmar. Massa is replacing Bruce Rueben, who is leaving next week to become president of the Florida Hospital Association.