Memic’s innovative stock: robotic surgery for gynecology

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Last month, we featured an interesting surgical robotics company for urology called PROCEPT BioRobotics (PRCT) shortly before its IPO a few weeks ago. PROCEPT has developed the first and only image-guided, heat-less robotic platform for the treatment of a type of prostate condition that affects the urinary tract. The company has generated significant revenue and is chaired by the founder of the world’s most valuable robotic surgery company, Intuitive Surgical (ISRG). Now, another niche surgical robotics company with a similar profile has announced plans to go public by merging with a sspecial pgoal apurchase vscompany (After-sales service).

About Memic Innovative Stock

Founded in 2012, Memic Innovative Surgery is an Israeli company that has raised nearly $ 128 million from a small handful of investors, with most of the money coming just earlier this year in April from a $ 96 million Series D. While the names of the investors won’t necessarily impress anyone (Israeli company OurCrowd is quite active in its territory), the names attached to the management team of the proposed company are noteworthy. In the first row is Dr. Maurice R. Ferré, who is both independent director of SPAC, MedTech Acquisition Corporation (MTAC) and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Memic. Dr Ferré is the co-founder of MAKO Surgical, a robotic platform focused on orthopedic surgery that medical device company Stryker (SYK) acquired in 2013 for $ 1.65 billion.

If all goes according to plan, Dr. F will become the executive chairman of the company combined with a valuation of $ 665 million and around $ 360 million in the bank to begin marketing his FDA-cleared Hominis surgical robot.

Promote an infrequently used hysterectomy procedure

Where the PROCEPT robotic platform is focused on male health, Memic’s Hominis platform first specializes in female reproductive health through a transvaginal surgical technique for several types of interventions, including hysterectomies. This may be complicated terminology and even uncomfortable for our male dominated audience, so let’s get closer to the female reproductive system (in a non-scary way).

Types of hysterectomy surgical procedures.
Types of hysterectomy surgical procedures. Credit: Memic

A hysterectomy is surgery to remove a woman’s uterus or uterus. There are a number of reasons why this surgery is necessary, including a heavy period, long-term pelvic pain, non-cancerous tumors called fibroids, and various types of cancer. Most hysterectomies involve an abdominal procedure in which the uterus is removed through an incision in the lower abdomen or laparoscopic surgery (including robotics) where the uterus is removed by several small cuts in the stomach. A third option is a vaginal hysterectomy which involves a single incision in the vaginal canal.

Data shows that vaginal hysterectomies provide the best results for patients.
Data shows that vaginal hysterectomies provide the best results for patients. Credit: Memic

A vaginal hysterectomy is apparently the least invasive of all the procedures, with less scarring, less pain, and better recovery times – but currently only accounts for about 16% of all hysterectomies. As you can imagine, it’s hard for a surgeon to see what he or she is doing there without any visualization techniques, which requires a lot of finger probing – basically blindly searching for the right spot. (We know, ladies, what else is new.) Another challenge concerns the anatomical aspects of certain uterine diseases which make manual transvaginal surgery particularly difficult.

Robotic surgery for gynecology

Robots can do better, according to Memic CEOs.

The tabletop-mounted Hominis platform features miniature humanoid-shaped robotic arms with shoulder, elbow and wrist joints that provide human-level dexterity and 360-degree articulation, allowing it to reach the entire surgical site, according to Memic. Both robotic instruments are multifunctional and can each be used for grasping, dissection, bipolar and monopolar coagulation and cutting – so there is no need to swap robotic instruments during the operation. To us, it looks like Spiderman’s villain Dr. Octopus has replaced the menacing claws at the end of his tentacles with cockroach clips:

The Hominis robotic surgery platform.
The Hominis robotic surgery platform. Credit: Memic

A recent clinical study evaluating the Hominis system revealed that all 30 hysterectomies using the transvaginal approach were performed successfully with no device-related adverse events or intraoperative complications. Apparently, the clinical evidence to date has been good enough to gain FDA clearance for transvaginal procedures, and Memic is seeking similar marketing authorization in the European Union.

A handful of studies have convinced the FDA to authorize the hominis system for certain gynecological procedures.
A handful of studies have convinced the FDA to authorize the hominis system for certain gynecological procedures. Credit: Memic

Ultimately, the company plans to expand its robotic platform for procedures outside of gynecology and is developing AI-enabled features to support Hominis applications in the future.

Should you buy innovative Memic stocks?

We are not your mother, so we never tell you what to do with your money. But here is our breakdown of the Memic offer.

Good: Memic appears to be entering a new untapped market in the United States, with approximately one million transvaginal procedures per year. Regulatory clearance beyond the U.S. border could more than quadruple that number, with a ttotal aaddressable mMarlet (TAM) over $ 4 billion, according to Memic. TAM explodes to over $ 10 billion if the company can meet its goal of expanding into other types of surgery.

TAM for transvaginal procedures.
TAM for transvaginal procedures. Credit: Memic

Customers will be able to rent, lease, pay per use, or purchase the platform directly. The company plans to sell its machine for around $ 600,000 – well below the $ 2 million gold standard of Intuitive Surgical’s flagship da Vinci robotic system. Memic estimates that about 70% of its revenue will come from the sale of Hominis to hospitals and the company is “confident” that it can sell up to 400 of them by 2025, which would represent $ 240 million in sales. The positive side is also that Memic has a management team who know how to market these machines to hospitals.

The Hominis surgical robotic system shows the downsizing of technology.
The Hominis surgical robotic system shows the downsizing of technology. Credit: Memic

The bad: Let’s start with zero, as in zero revenue to date, and we don’t invest in companies with no significant revenue, which we set to be a minimum of $ 10 million per year. The valuation of $ 665 million is also below our threshold of $ 1 billion. Although the management team has been successful in the past, that is no guarantee of future success, as the saying goes. You can tell us you’re going to sell 400 machines in four years, but that and $ 5 will get you a latte at Starbucks. Memic has yet to prove that he knows how to successfully market a product that involves surgery that few surgeons in the world perform on a regular basis.

As we highlighted last year in our article on robotic surgery stocks, the market is increasingly crowded, especially with large-cap medical device companies like Stryker and Medtronic (MDT) making their mark. entry into the industry. Other upstarts like Memic that we covered in our previous article on robotic surgery stocks did not fare well. TransEnterix has pivoted to focus on its AI and computer vision technologies for robotic surgical systems, with a name change to Asensus Surgical (ASXC), with a market cap south of $ 500 million. And we don’t know what’s going on with Titan Medical (TMDI), but the value of the company, as it was, has plunged about half since a recent peak in early February. Titan now has a market capitalization of around $ 180 million. We won’t even bother with the $ 50 million Microbot Medical (MBOT) micro-cap that hasn’t released much beyond a logo for its product.

Robotic surgery itself has become somewhat controversial over the years. A meta-analysis of other research studies found that robotic operations may have better results than procedures performed by laparoscopy. However, the authors were not overly impressed with the quality of the research and said that given the “significant costs” associated with robotic surgery, manual laparoscopic procedures were still very competitive. A Nature News article last year went even further, saying the long-term results are statistically the same, although it does recognize that robotic surgery patients experience reduced blood loss, less pain, and downtime. shorter recovery times. The main beef in the article, again, seemed to be overpriced. Whether companies like Memic can gain enough ground to push prices forward remains a big unknown.

Conclusion

And this is our big hesitation with the title Memic Innovative: We still do not know too much about this company, especially since it takes the SPAC route, which by definition is opaque. In fact, there is so much information missing that we are not even sure which ticker symbol the merged company will trade under. If you’re interested, it’ll be somewhere on the Nasdaq by the end of the year.

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