D8 Holdings has announced that the company would be acquiring Vicarious Surgical in a transaction valued at $1.1 billion. The acquisition would also make Bill Gates-backed Vicarious Surgical a publicly-traded company. The transaction is backed by a $115 million private placement of common stock priced at $10 per share. It also includes investment by Becton Dickinson, the new institutional investors, while existing investors include Bill Gates, Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors, Philip Liang’s E15 VC, and Vinod Khosla’s Khosla Ventures.
Vicarious Surgical produces surgical robots that combine human-like mechanical arms with virtual reality technology that acts to transport doctors inside the patient when performing minimally invasive procedures. Vicarious Surgical was founded by Adam Sachs, Co-Founder and CEO, Sam Khalifa, Co-Founder and CTO, and Dr. Barry Greene, Co-Founder and CMO in 2014.
“Seven years ago, we started this company in order to solve the long-standing and persistent issues presented by open surgery, standard minimally invasive surgery, and legacy robotic surgery. Legacy robotic platforms were introduced with the promise of solving the challenges of open surgery; unfortunately, these legacy robotic platforms have significant limitations, including prohibitive cost of adoption, limited mobility, and capabilities in the body and required space, set up time, and lengthy training. After more than two decades on the market, it is no surprise that legacy robotic penetration is just 3%. Our robotic solution has arms that replicate human motion, offering remarkable mobility with 9 degrees of freedom per arm with 360-degree visualization, all through a 1.5 cm incision. Our robot can see, reach, and work anywhere inside the abdomen, which effectively shrinks the surgeon and puts her/him inside the human body. Our system fits through a standard door, making it portable from operating room to operating room and does not require a large footprint or facility construction build-out.” – Adam Sachs.
The surgical robotics market, which Intuitive Surgical has largely dominated, is beginning to become a tad more competitive.
The surgical robotics segment is expected to see two new entrants in the market they are Johnson & Johnson and Medtronic. Both the companies have revealed surgical robotics platforms. Medtronic announced its surgical robotics platform towards the end of 2019. At the same time, Johnson & Johnson announced its platform in November 2020.
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