Next-generation robotics company Vicarious Surgical Inc. is expected to go public sometime in the third quarter of 2021 through a merger with a SPAC (special purpose acquisition company).
In April, the Massachusetts-based company announced that it reached a definitive agreement to merge with SPAC D8 Holdings Corp. (DEH). After the transaction is complete, the combined company will be valued at about $1.1 billion.
The merger is expected to deliver up to $460 million of gross proceeds, including about $345 million in cash held in the D8 trust account.
Global medical technology giant BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company) and Microsoft founder Bill Gates are among the list of participants in a fully committed $115 million PIPE priced at $10 per share. Other PIPE investors include Vinod Khosla's Khosla Ventures, Eric Schmidt's Innovation Endeavors, and Philip Liang's E15 VC.
Once the transaction is complete, the combined company will trade on the NYSE under the ticker symbol “RBOT.”
What is Vicarious Surgical?
Vicarious Surgical was founded in 2014 by friends Adam Sachs and Sammy Khalifa, who studied together at MIT, and Dr. Barry Greene, a bariatric surgeon who knew Sachs’s family.
The idea for the company’s miniature surgical robots originally came from Sachs’s fascination with the 1966 sci-fi movie Fantastic Voyage. In the movie, doctors are shrunk down to miniature sizes so they can go into the human body and perform surgeries.
“Humans are the wrong size to operate on humans,” Sachs told Forbes. “We’re not going to shrink humans down, but we can create avatars of them. We can create little miniature robotic versions.”
Similar to the movie, Vicarious Surgical's tiny human-like robots are used with virtual reality to transport surgeons inside the patient to perform minimally invasive surgery.
“Our robot can see, reach, and work anywhere inside the abdomen, which effectively shrinks the surgeon and puts her/him inside the human body,” Sachs said in a statement.
The company’s technology was the first and only surgical robot to receive breakthrough device designations from the FDA.
Vicarious Surgical robots work in half the time at half the cost.
Vicarious Surgical’s robots can complete surgeries in half the time compared to its competitors, Sachs told Forbes. The robot’s price tag of about $1.2 million is also almost half the cost of existing robots, Forbes reports.
“We believe our robotic solution will offer a cost-effective path to improving patient outcomes and increasing the efficiency of surgical procedures for hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers,” Sachs said.
When Vicarious Surgical brings its surgical robot to market in 2023, the plan is first to focus on using it in hernia repair surgeries. It will eventually expand to other abdominal surgeries like gallbladder procedures.
How can I buy stock in Vicarious Surgical?
With over 2 million hernia repair procedures performed in the U.S. each year, Vicarious Surgical’s robot could very well take off when it hits the market in 2023.
If you are looking to invest in Vicarious Surgical, you can buy shares of D8 Holdings SPAC (DEH) right now. DEH is currently trading on the NYSE at $9.89 per share.