Dexcom CEO: We don't think patients will drop our feature-filled glucose monitors for Abbott's

Key Points
  • "Mad Money" host Jim Cramer sat down with Dexcom President and CEO Kevin Sayer, who said Abbott's glucose monitoring products have "nothing" on Dexcom's.
  • The CEO said that Dexcom has been competing in Europe for years, and its glucose monitors' features have carried the weight.
  • Sayer also spoke about Dexcom's new innovations with the Apple Watch.
Dexcom CEO doesn't think patients will drop his company's glucose monitors for Abbott's

Abbott gaining FDA approval for its no-prick glucose monitoring device won't have a dramatic effect on Dexcom's sales, Dexcom President and CEO Kevin Sayer told CNBC on Thursday.

"One of the hidden assets of Dexcom is this investment we've made in technology," Sayer told "Mad Money" host Jim Cramer. "Our system offers features that competitors' don't. We connect to phones. We share data with people who watch patients. We offer performance and accuracy that others don't. We've been competing with [Abbott's] Libre in Europe for three years now, and you've seen our international growth, up 80 percent in the third quarter. So it's not like we're getting killed."

In Dexcom's post-earnings conference call, management said Dexcom could release its own blood-free glucose motoring device by the end of next year.

For now, Dexcom's devices still require diabetes patients to go through the sometimes unnerving task of drawing their own blood, albeit only once a day.

Even so, Sayer emphasized that European customers have stuck by Dexcom's products despite the availability of other, potentially cheaper blood-free monitors.

"I think, over the next several quarters, patients who use our product will continue to use it, and we don't see a mass migration because of the features that we have," the CEO said. "And those who intensively manage their diabetes, who are dependent upon insulin to control their condition, this technology has the features that they need more than what Abbott has, much more."

In an emailed response to CNBC's request for comment, Abbott spokesperson Scott Stoffel wrote:

"We understand there is a small population of people with diabetes who need the more traditional continuous glucose monitoring systems, that unfortunately still require painful finger stick calibration for accuracy and are expensive. For everyone else, there's the more compact, more affordable, revolutionary FreeStyle Libre that liberates people from the pain and hassles of routine finger sticks."

Still, Dexcom takes pride in its "technology pipeline," which has put its products on the radar of tech giants like Apple. Sayer said that Dexcom's next venture with the newest Apple Watch will involve a heightened form of monitoring that will make it easier to share patient data.

"The Apple Watch, the new one, has an LTE feature whereby it can go straight to the cloud. So, in essence, our transmitter will be able to talk straight to the watch, and those features where patients share their data with their loved ones won't need to go through the phone anymore. You can put your watch on, that can be your primary device," Sayer told Cramer.

And when asked about any advantages Abbott could potentially have on the Dexcom-savvy Apple Watch, Sayer had a simple response:


Watch Kevin Sayer's full interview here:

Dexcom CEO: We don't think patients will drop our feature-filled glucose monitors for Abbott's

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