Exo raised $40 million for its handheld medical imaging device

Exo, a developer of new diagnostic hardware for the medical industry, has raised $40 million in a new round of funding as investors continue to back new companies that are reducing the cost and complexity of medical devices.

Cost, portability, image quality and the inability to image dense body compositions have all limited the impact that diagnostic tools like ultrasounds can have on patient care around the world, according to a statement from the company.

Exo solves that problem by building on a patented piezoelectric micromachined ultrasound transducer, the company said.

Its device improves image quality, while an accompanying software toolkit boosts the diagnostic capabilities of the device.

Exo predicts that the worldwide point of care ultrasound market will reach $1.5 billion in 2024 and grow at nearly 10% a year.

“Emergency room phyisicians around the world are often tasked with solving some of the most urgent healthcare problems — COVID-19 diagnosis and complications, cardiac emergencies, internal bleeding — without being able to see clearly into a patient they only have minutes to diagnose and treat,” said Exo chief executive Sandeep Akkaraju, in a statement.

The new $40 million round to back the company’s technology follows a $35 million investment in 2019 and brings the company’s total capital raised to nearly $100 million, according to a statement. The funding was led by Fiscus Ventures, Reimagined Ventures (both affiliates of Magnetar Capital) and Action Potential Ventures, with additional participation from TDK Ventures, Solasta Ventures and all previous investors, including Intel Capital and Applied Ventures.

Exo’s team comes from consumer tech giants like Apple and Google and leading medical device companies like GE, Johnson & Johnson, Maxim, Medtronic and Siemens.

“As both an emergency room physician and a venture capitalist, I know firsthand the transformative potential of the products that Exo is bringing to market,” said Dr. Ted Koutouzis of Fiscus and Reimagined Ventures, in a statement. “The Exo team is focused on building a device that works seamlessly within the often chaotic and urgent environment of a hospital, and delivers the image quality, clean interface, and diagnostic tools that doctors have dreamed about having in the palm of our hands.”

The Exo hardware comes with a suite of software tools that have been designed to integrate with existing workflows. And the company has plans to use its initial foray into medical imaging as a way to land and expand into a broader suite of tools for the hospital or urgent care environment. The company envisions a multi-functional device that can perform a number of different diagnoses.

“Exo is creating a platform technology that can drive true adoption of point of care imaging in emergency rooms and critical care units, can facilitate advanced surgical robotics and endoscopic procedures, and could enable therapeutic modalities in non-invasive neuromodulation and drug-delivery,” said Juan Pablo Mas, of Action Potential Venture Capital (the corporate venture arm of GlaxoSmithKline focused on bioelectronic technologies).