The news: Medtronic said Monday it is buying two companies for $1 billion, expanding its presence in the heart valve market.

The deal: Medtronic bought CoreValve Inc. of Irvine, Calif., for $700 million, plus additional payments contingent on the achievement of certain milestones, and Ventor Technologies Ltd. of Israel for $325 million.

The rationale: Med-tech needs a hot new technology, and some analysts believe minimally invasive devices and procedures to repair failing heart valves could be it.

What's next: Medtronic hopes to launch both companies' products in the United States in 2014, with clinical trials of the technologies beginning in 12 to 18 months.

A big deal: The CoreValve deal is believed to be the largest buyout of a venture-backed medical-device maker since at least 1998, according to VentureSource.