Axiles Bionics successfully completes a €2.4M Series A financing roundPosted on
First BruBotics spin-off to market bionic prostheses
Proceeds will be used for the development of AXILES BIONICS’ advanced Robotics & AI technology for lower limb amputees
Brussels, Belgium, September 10, 2019 – Axiles Bionics, a Brussels startup developing an innovative smart robotic ankle-foot prosthesis for lower limb amputees, announces that it has successfully completed a €2.4M Series A financing round, led by its co-founders and several private investors, including VUB and ULB alumni. The proceeds will be used to advance the research, development, and clinical validation of Axiles Bionics’ next generation bionic foot. Bart van Gael (ex CEO HENRARD SA), Michel Delloye (ex CEO RTL Group, GBL and Private equity investor), Jacques Langhendries (ex CEO and founder HiGH5 Recycling) and Stefan Yee (CEO PE Group), as chairman, have joined the board of directors.
Current prostheses are still a long way off from fully replacing a lost limb. Despite the clear demand from amputees for better ankle-foot prostheses, innovations remain scarce due to the challenge of replicating the human body.
Based on 12 years of Innoviris-supported robotics research at BruBotics, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, blending advanced robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and human biomechanics, Axiles Bionics developed a technology capable of recreating the unique combination of strength and flexibility of a human ankle. This unique bionic technology is capable of bringing back a natural gait and posture during daily life activities, providing high responsiveness to the person’s intention and assisting during efforts by compensating for the lost leg muscles.
“We are thrilled and excited to have raised this substantial amount of private financing to further develop and bring our advanced bionic technology to the people,” says Pierre Cherelle, PhD in Robotics Engineering (VUB) and Founder CEO of Axiles Bionics.
“We believe that advanced robotics and Artificial Intelligence will play a major role in improving the quality of life of people in the near future. It’s very exciting to contribute to this process.” says Felipe Gomez, PhD in Artificial Intelligence (VUB) and co-founder CTO of Axiles Bionics.
From lab to market
Prof. Dirk Lefeber, head of BruBotics, is thrilled to see this happening:
As researchers at a university we often develop advanced prototypes, but only rarely do we see these make it to the market and be put to good use for our society. We are very happy that thanks to the perseverance of the Axiles' team this prosthetic technology can escape the lab and serve the amputees who need it.
Worldwide there are only 3 companies working on similar advanced robotic prostheses. It's wonderful to be able to start a spin-off like this here in Brussels.
Within other projects, namely a European Horizon2020 project, we continue to work on robotic prostheses, also for transfemoral amputees. We are still looking for ways to further test the prototypes but we are confident that we will be able to advance these sufficiently as well.
Axiles Bionics has an exciting but challenging future ahead of them. I hope that through further collaborations we can continue to contribute to their succes. In the future, novel technologies, materials, controls, AI...will need to be developed to further improve robotic bionic prostheses so that they can truly mimick the lost limbs.
CEO Axiles Bionics
+32 476 37 82 82
About AXILES BIONICS
Incorporated in January 2019, Axiles Bionics is a prospective spin-off from Brubotics of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel with a mission to improve the quality of life of people with smart assistive robotics and with an ambition to build an innovation center of excellence in new bionic technologies in Brussels.
Based upon 12 years of Robotics Research with the financial support of The Brussels Region Innoviris programme, the first focus of Axiles Bionics is on lower limb amputees and bringing a new generation bionic feet at an affordable price to the market. Axiles Bionics is also supported by the Caring Entrepreneurship Fund of the King Baudouin Foundation.
About VUB & BRUBOTICS
The Vrije Universiteit Brussel is an internationally oriented university in Brussels, the heart of Europe. By providing excellent research and education on a human scale, VUB wants to make an active and committed contribution to a better society.
The Brussels Human Robotics Research Center, BruBotics, is a joint initiative of 8 research groups of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) striving to improve quality of life through Human Robotics. With over 100 researchers combining expertise in robotics, AI, rehabilitation, physiology, sociology, ageing, marketing and eHealth, BruBotics is one of the leaders in European human robotics research.
www.vub.ac.be / www.brubotics.eu
As the Brussels Institute for Research and Innovation, Innoviris supports
Brussels companies, research institutes, non-profit organisations and citizens through the funding of innovative projects.
About CARING ENTREPRENEURSHIP FUND
The Caring Entrepreneurship Fund, managed by the King Baudouin Foundation, wants to support entrepreneurs in the creation of their business in the Health and Wellness sector. Our major goal is to create employment while impacting health and wellness of society. Start-ups, especially in this field, are a key force for development and progress to overcome unsatisfied medical needs and the ageing of the population.
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