History & Milestones

Minnetronix was founded in 1996 by former 3M engineers Rich Nazarian, Dirk Smith, and Jon Pierce. The trio’s vision was to build a company devoted to advancing medical technology in an environment where employees were valued and supported and where engineering performance and technical excellence could flourish.

Artificial Heart Partnership Launches Minnetronix

The Minnetronix Team Circa 1998

Minnetronix entered the medical device market as the industry was rapidly expanding and increasingly in need of engineering resources. Medical device companies were becoming more comfortable with outsourcing to engineering and manufacturing services companies, and Minnetronix quickly established itself as a capable partner.

Software-Driven Controller for a Total Artificial Heart

The company’s initial project was the development of a software driven controller for a total artificial heart (ETAH). This federally-funded program was a joint effort between 3M Cardiovascular Systems Division, Penn State University, and Minnetronix, and it helped lay the groundwork for the company’s technology direction and rapid business growth.

Rapid Growth Defines Company’s Course

Over the next two years, Minnetronix grew from an engineering services firm into a full-service high-tech medical systems design and manufacturing operation. Highly-skilled engineering teams coupled with expanded production capabilities fueled impressive growth and the need for additional space. Ultimately, the company settled in St. Paul where operations in three buildings provide 120,000 square feet of thoughtfully-designed high-tech office, engineering, laboratory and manufacturing space. Today, the company’s work hard/play hard philosophy is evident in the building’s unique lab and office spaces, forward thinking conference rooms, modern lunchrooms, fitness center, and a one-of-a-kind all-company meeting space that doubles as a basketball court.

Experience and Knowledge Drive New Ventures

In 2009, with the knowledge and expertise gained from hundreds of thousands of engineering hours devoted to developing nearly 100 devices, Minnetronix launched its New Ventures Group. The team’s mission: to build an IP technology portfolio by identifying and pursuing unique solutions to challenges facing the medical device market. Through internal project development and acquisitions, the Minnetronix IP portfolio has grown to include the Cognita™ wireless monitoring system, TETS - wireless energy transmission technology for mechanical circulatory support devices, percutaneous VAD technology, and neurocritical care technology.

As Minnetronix enters its third decade, the company has established its reputation as a premier medical technology company. Our teams have completed hundreds of projects for companies in more than 20 states and eight foreign countries. And, Minnetronix has remained loyal to the founders’ vision of creating a company that values and supports its people while improving patients’ lives.


1996 - Minnetronix incorporated

1998 - Registered with the FDA as  Medical Device Manufacturer 

2000 - Shipped first finished medical device

2002 - Tekne Award winner: Advanced Manufacturing

2003 - Received ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 13485:2004 certification

2004 - Named 'Great Place to Work' by the Twin Cities Business Journal

2006 - Celebrated ten successful years and added 23,600 square foot facility

2008 - Tekne Award winner: Medical Technology

2009 - Launched New Ventures Group for new medical technology development

2010 - Growth requires expansion, adding facility space in 2010, 2012, and 2013

2012 - Signed first licensing agreement with Penn State Research Foundation for wireless energy transmission technology for congestive heart failure assist devices

2013 - Acquired neurocritical care technology for IP portfolio

2016 - Minnetronix raises $20 million in equity capital to support growth initiatives

2017 - Expansion projects improve the Saint Paul campus to meet increasing design and manufacturing volumes

2017 - Minetronix recognizes seventh FDA QSIT Inspection with "No-Action-Indicated" maintaing a perfect inspection report since 2001