Medical device company Motus GI from Tirat Hacarmel has announced that it intends to raise $29 million on Nasdaq. The planned company valuation for the offering was not disclosed. The offering underwriters will be Piper Jaffray and Oppenheimer.
Motus GI has developed a device called Pure-Vu for cleaning the colon in advance of a colonoscopy. It was founded in the NGT incubator in Nazareth in 2008. The company's product is approved for sale in the US and Europe, but does not at present have insurance coverage.
The marketing approval that the company has obtained does not enable it to replace the process of clearing the colon, but only to supplement it. Motus GI hopes that the amount it plans to raise will enable it to carry out a clinical trial that will demonstrate that its product can replace, or substantially lighten, existing preparation processes. It believes that it will then probably be able to obtain insurance coverage and expand its marketing effort.
The product is currently undergoing a commercial pilot mainly aimed at gathering marketing and clinical data. The company does not currently have significant revenue, and it declares in its prospectus that it does not expect such revenue in the next 2-3 years.
Preparation for a colonoscopy currently involves drinking a powerful bowel-clearing substance to induce diarrhea, and using enemas. 25% of patients still do not manage to prepare the colon adequately for colonoscopy procedures, and are sometimes sent away to make an appointment for a later date, or else the doctor may carry out the procedure but with diminished effectiveness, meaning that cancerous growths may be missed.
Motus GI's product fits over the colonoscope and allows the doctor to flush the colon during the procedure. So far, it has been tried on 175 patients, and has demonstrated that its use enables a colonoscopy procedure to be carried out after a less rigorous preparation process than is currently required.
Motus GI was founded by Boris Shtul, an electronic engineer and an expert on medical devices. The company's CEO is Mark Pomeranz. It recently announced the appointment of Gary Pruden, formerly executive vice president and worldwide chairman for the Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) Medical Devices group, to its board of directors. Pruden said at the time, "I believe that the Pure-Vu System's ability to cleanse the colon during a colonoscopy will play a significant role in improving outcomes, reducing costs and enhancing experiences, which ultimately should help to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer and other GI disorders."
In the first nine months of 2018, Motus GI posted a loss of $9.4 million. It has $9.8 million cash. At one stage in its history the company collapsed and its activity was transferred to a new company in which the investors are mainly US funds. It has 36 employees, most of them based in Tirat Hacarmel.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 7, 2018
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