Vanderbilt endoscopic surgical-device startup Virtuoso Surgical Inc. is eyeing a $3MM Seed capital raise and a follow-on letter round, and is discussing those efforts with investment bankers "mainly in California and New York."
Virtuoso General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer Mark Pickrell today told Venture Nashville the Seed round is likely to be followed by a further raise, this autumn.
The capital push is to support further development and future commercialization of technology to which the company has secured access through separate intellectual property licensing agreements with Vanderbilt University and with Johns Hopkins University.
Virtuoso is led by Co-founder and President Robert Webster III, PhD, who is an associate professor in the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering's Department of Mechanical Engineering.Webster had earlier worked as principal investigator on the technology while a doctoral candidate at Johns Hopkins. In 2006, he and others at Johns Hopkins patented concentric tube technology for surgical purposes.
The work by Webster and several of his co-founders led to creation of a hand-held robotic surgery system with multiple robotic manipulators that can be inserted via a standard clinical endoscope, according to the abstract that accompanied notice of Virtuoso's 2017 award of a Phase II SBIR grant via NIBIB.
The $3MM Seed raise would support continued prototype development and early steps toward achieving regulatory approval.
The company opened its doors in September 2017. It now has four full-time team members and several contractors, for a total of 7 FTE staff, said Pickrell.
With no outside investment yet to report, the company today filed on its Seed raise with the SEC.
Virtuoso is advised on securities by attorney Marc Adesso of Waller Lansden. Pickrell said the company has begun outreach to potential investment bankers for future assignments.
Virtuoso is also in discussions with a number of accounting firms about a potential advisory role, he confirmed.