The US$3 billion UK robotics firm’s Versius system consists of multiple robotic arms that can assist surgeons by performing a wide range of minimally invasive operations.

Robotics startup CMR Surgical is looking to establish its presence in Hong Kong as a gateway to expand into the Asia-Pacific region. The startup, which is backed by investors including SoftBank, Tencent Holdings, and GE Healthcare, is targeting local surgeons in Hong Kong, a market that sill serve as a launchpad to bring the Versius system to the region, according to Per Vegard Nerseth, chief executive of the Cambridge-based firm. “Hong Kong will be the first entry into the region, with expansion from there into Japan, Singapore and mainland China.”

“Our vision is to build an intimate and long-term customer relationship with local surgeons, which means in Hong Kong we have decided to go direct to this audience,” says Nerseth. “In time we will expand our Hong Kong team to include sales, marketing, professional education and technical support as well as clinical teams to support systems and growth.” In April earlier this year, in its first steps to expand to Hong Kong, CMR Surgical placed the Versius robotic system at the Chinese University of Hong Kong Jockey Club Minimally Invasive Surgical Skills Centre (MISSC). The demonstration allowed surgeons at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sha Tin to experience and test out the Versius system for the first time. The robotics firm hopes to see systems in Hong Kong within a few months.

The system’s modular and portable design has been used in over 1,000 procedures, mainly gynaecology and colorectal related surgeries, across Europe, Australia, India and the Middle East, according to CMR.

Just over a month ago, the Cambridge robotics firm announced that it had raised US$ 600 million in their Series D funding round. This amount joins an existing $384.8 million already raised by the firm, giving the company a valuation of US$3 billion. As of late, surgical technology has become an increasingly popular category among venture capital funds.

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