Poznan, Poland – Medical robotics company, Aether Biomedical, has raised a seed round of EUR 750,000 from Sunfish Partners, Chiratae Ventures India, and Joyance Partners. Aether Biomedical’s goal is to build data driven rehabilitation robotics devices starting with bionic limbs.
“The investment will help the company launch its first flagship product Zeus, a bionic limb for upper limb amputees, onto the market. We had a very specific goal in mind while building Zeus – Reduce the price without compromising on the efficiency. To do so we have heavily relied on advancements in additive manufacturing, signal processing, as well as machine learning and continue to do so in the development of future products. ” Says Dhruv Agrawal, CEO of Aether Biomedical.
Specifically, Zeus is a multi-action bionic aiming at improving the accessibility of bionic products to the amputee population. Zeus provides more than 150N of grip force, one of the highest on the market, combined with a smooth, elegant design, while being 30 – 40% more affordable than competitors. One of the key features that Aether Biomedical has focused on while building Zeus is robustness. Zeus has an innovative impact resistance mechanism protecting against daily life stresses, and has a static holding capacity of 35 Kgs on its fingers (Like carrying a bag).
“We want Zeus to be acting as a support system for amputees, spending minimal time in the repair and servicing. What makes Zeus unique is the modular structure, allowing for repair at a local service center level.” Says Dr Faith Jiwakhan, CTO of Aether Biomedical.
“Over 10 million people in the world are reported to be living with upper limb amputations. Aether aims to address this large market globally, and the ever-rising amputee population. The robotics prosthetic market is to witness significant innovation and product need from around the world. The unique features of the product which make it state of the art design and accessible have the potential to create life changing and hence life-enabling solutions for a number of people, especially in emerging economies.” Sudhir Sethi, Founder and Chairman, Chiratae Ventures India.
Aether Biomedical has conducted extensive internal testing for Zeus and is moving ahead with the completion of the medical certification process and launch of the product. The first geographies covered will be Europe and India. Zeus V1 is only the beginning. Aether Biomedical plans to strongly expand its R&D operations and the development of its core IP in biosignal processing aimed towards data driven rehabilitation. Aether Biomedical has already started shipping the demo kits to prosthetic centers for demonstration to patients..
“Data-driven rehabilitation has the potential to make life better for millions of people, and Aether Biomedical has a real shot to help us get there. What got us interested in the team was its bold vision; what made us invest was its relentless drive, day in and out, to make this vision a reality.” says Dr. Marcus Erken, Partner, Sunfish partners.
Aether Biomedical was founded by Dhruv Agrawal and Dr. Faith Jiwakhan and has grown to 12 employees. Initially started in India, Aether Biomedical was invited to be a part of the Poland prize program, organized by Brinc and PARP in 2018. The company chose to stay in Poland and raised its pre seed round from Shape VC and subsequently became a part of the Robotunion program and was awarded a grant as one of the most promising robotics startups in Europe.
Maciej Frankowicz, Partner @ Shape.vc says “It takes a lot of courage to move to a foreign continent to start a business, especially if you’re in your early 20-ties. I am very happy that from all the available options the founders have chosen Poland for starting the company.”
Aether Biomedical has also received the Fasttrack accessibility plus grant from the National Center of Research and Development, Poland (NCBR). The grant funding is being utilized for continuing the development of Zeus hand by adding even more advanced features and developing accessory products such as wrist rotation unit and powered elbow system.
“We are thrilled to support Aether Biomedical in their groundbreaking work in rehabilitation robotics,” said Joyance Partners’ Managing Director Paolo Pio. “Dhruv assembled a great team, and they have a huge potential to empower amputees worldwide to live fuller, happier lives.”
Aether was advised by Jedrzej Szymczyk and his team from LLW for the successful completion of this transaction.
See Zeus in action in the below clip –
About Aether Biomedical –
Aether Biomedical is a medical robotics startup with its focus on building bionic limbs for upper limb amputees. Aether Biomedical’s product Zeus is a low cost – high efficacy multi action bionic limb for upper limb amputees.
About Sunfish Partners –
Sunfish Partners is an early stage VC that invests in Polish deep tech startups. Sunfish Partners has offices in Warsaw and Berlin. To learn more, go to www.sunfish.vc and follow them on Twitter @sunfishpartners.
About Chiratae Ventures India –
Launched in 2006, Chiratae Ventures India Advisors (formerly IDG Ventures India) is India’s leading technology Venture Capital funds advisor. The funds advised by Chiratae Ventures India Advisors collectively have over $700 M under management and 80+ investee companies across Consumer Media & Tech, Cloud/Software, Health-tech and Fin-tech. Notable portfolio companies include Bounce, Curefit, FirstCry, Flipkart, Forus, Lenskart, Manthan, Myntra (acquired by Flipkart), NestAway, Newgen (NSE: NEWGEN), PolicyBazaar, Rentomojo, Unbxd and Yatra (NASDAQ: YTRA) among others.
About Joyance Partners –
Joyance Partners is a $20M venture capital partnership that invests in companies with the capacity to deliver, or contribute to the delivery of, Delightful Moments.