2. MARKET ANALYSIS
Generally, artificial hip joints are utilized in the orthopaedic surgical field. The final buyers are patients suffering from various hip problems including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, traumatic arthritis and avascular necrosis . According to King , the artificial joints market is valued at about $12.2 billion in 2008, within which hip and knee replacements act as one of the key segments. Considering of the large market demand, a market analysis is essential to evaluate the possible market potential.
2.1. Current Market
In a Datamonitor report of hip and knee replacement market , the contribution of the US is nearly 50% of total procedures worldwide and the contribution of Europe is around 30%. This statistics show that the US and Europe are the two largest markets for hip and knee implants on a global scale.
According to the Datamonitor's market data , "the 2005 revenues for hip implants in the US were $2 billion and that for Europe was $1.4 billion". Taking the US market for example, the total hip replacement procedures (including hip resurfacing) number was 368,660 in 2005 .
Another example is the data of the Australian orthopaedic market. According to a global market research , "there were approximately 72,007 joint replacement operations performed".
2.2. Future Growth
A statistical data cited by The New York Times  shows that "the number of total hip replacements has risen by almost 80% since 2000" (see Figure 1).
As can be seen in Figure 1, the number of total US hip replacements have been growing stably since 2000. It is expected that this trend will be a sustainable growth in the next few years.
According to King , the global artificial joints market is expected to "grow by more than 9% annually to reach $17.4 billion by 2012 and is forecast to contribute 45% of the overall orthopaedic devices market value by 2012".
2.3. International Competitors
Using 2005 US knee replacement market share for reference (the hip replacement market data is difficult to obtain) , the main competitors are very obvious as follow.
Figure 2. 2005 US Knee Replacement Market Share 
 Slowik, G. ed. 2009. Hip Replacement [online]. [Accessed 17 January 2010]. Available from: http://www.ehealthmd.com/library/totalhipreplacement/THR_needed.html.
 King, M. 2009. The Future of the Orthopaedic Devices Market to 2012 [online]. [Accessed 17 January 2010]. Available from: http://www.hipresurfacingnews.com/archives/265-The-Future-of-the-Orthopedic-Devices-Market-to-2012.html.
 Datamonitor, 2006. Hip and Knee Replacement Market (sample pages) [online]. [Accessed 18 January 2010]. Available from: http://www.datamonitor.com/store/Download/Brochure/?productId=DMHC2264.
 A&M Mind Power Solutions, 2010. Global Orthopaedic Market - Focus on Hip and Knee replacement (Description) [online]. [Accessed 18 January 2010]. Available from: http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reportinfo.asp?report_id=1193932.
 Feder, B.J. 2008. That Must Be Bob. I Hear His New Hip Squeaking [online]. [Accessed 18 January 2010]. Available from: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/11/business/11hip.html.
 Orthopaedic Design & Technology. 2008. Top Companies Report: A Comprehensive Look at the Biggest Worldwide Orthopaedic Manufacturers [online]. [Accessed 18 January 2010]. Available from: http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Top+companies+report:+a+comprehensive+look+at+the+biggest+worldwide...-a0183984285.