Osso VR CEO explains how he secured $66 million for his startup
The CEO of medical VR startup OSSO VR explains how he convinced investors of the effectiveness of medical VR training.
Since its founding in 2016, Osso VR has received $109 million in funding. The startup raised the largest sum in a Series C funding round in March of this year. CEO Justin Barad describes in an interview how the developers of the medical VR training were able to convince investors to give $66 million.
As real as possible
Osso VR aims to train doctors in various surgical techniques using virtual reality. The realistic VR training for surgeons is especially remarkable for its high-quality graphics.
Both the virtual patients and the medical instruments are meant to appear as real as possible. To achieve this, Osso VR works with design experts from the film and video game industries.
Earlier this year, Barad and his team raised $66 million in funding. The main investor is venture capital firm Oak HC/FT. In an interview with Business Insider, Barad outlines the key points of his presentation during the third round of funding.
VR training aims to compensate for lack of standards in surgical education
Barad, who once wanted to become a game designer himself but then decided to study medicine, points to a lack of standards in surgical training in his presentation.
For example, he said, there is no assessment of surgeons' actual skills in performing procedures. Osso VR, on the other hand, assesses surgical skills based on three main criteria:
- Do doctors know the steps of the procedure or what to do if something goes wrong?
- How exactly do physicians carry out these steps?
- How efficiently do physicians go through the process?
Barad cited better training outcomes, increased adoption, and broader access for investors as objectives of his startup. As challenges in surgical training, he listed "too much to learn, increasing complexity, minimal assessment."
More than 200 surgical training modules for the VR headset
Modern surgical techniques such as minimally invasive procedures have a "crazy steep learning curve," according to Barad. During his training at UCLA, he himself experienced colleagues asking him in the operating room to Google how to proceed during a surgery.
The VR platform enables surgeons in training to learn procedures without endangering patients. Twenty training programs worldwide are currently using Osso's platform.
The VR training includes more than 200 surgical training modules, he said, including specialties such as orthopedics, neurovascular surgery, and robotics. By the end of the year, Osso VR plans to simultaneously develop a hundred more modules. There will also be team training so that surgeons around the world can train together.
Surgeons learn how to handle instruments in VR
In addition to pure surgical training, Osso VR is also used by many well-known medical instrument manufacturers. These include Johnson & Johnson and Stryker. These companies use Osso VR to train surgeons in the use of their products.
It's a lucrative business for the startup. According to Barad, Osso VR's revenue scales with the number of training sessions medical technology companies conduct through the platform.
Ultimately, the startup's vision is for Osso VR's training to become a mandatory part of surgeon certification and recertification, he said. "Our mission is to democratize access to surgical education to everyone, everywhere", Barad said.
In his pitch deck, which can be viewed in full here, Barad also cites studies to prove the effectiveness of VR surgical training compared to traditional training.