On 17 September, CMR Surgical Limited (CMR Surgical), a UK-based robotic surgery devices company, announced that it has raised £195m ($240m) to entirely finance the global commercialisation of its next-generation surgical robotic system, Versius.

As a modular and portable system with a competitive price, Versius may threaten the leading position of the da Vinci system from Intuitive Surgical, especially in the Europe and Asia-Pacific regions.

Robotic surgical systems are designed to solve the limitations currently present in minimally invasive surgeries, as well as improve outcomes in open surgical procedures. Usage of robotic surgical systems varies widely by therapy area and geography. While some procedures, such as prostatectomy, exhibit heavy robotic system use, other areas such as cardiovascular and neurosurgery have not yet experienced wide adoption. Additionally, the high cost of the surgical system and maintenance fees largely affect the device penetration in developing countries and regions. Unlike large console-based robotic systems, the versatility and affordability of the Versius system broadens its usage in a wider range of minimally invasive surgeries. The system received the CE mark to access the European market this March. With sufficient funding, CMR Surgical has established commercial teams in India, the UK, and mainland Europe. As a result, Versius is expected to gain more share in these regions over the next two to three years.

Driven by ageing populations, an increasing number of minimally invasive surgeries, and expanding demand for value-based healthcare, the global robotic surgery market will expand to $7.4bn by 2028, at a robust compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9%. Increasing adoption of robotics systems will be fueled by a growing body of clinical data, as well as a growing number of indications. As robotic systems serve to improve surgical procedures, this will, in turn, increase the patient population eligible for treatment.

The US-based Intuitive Surgical is by far the largest player in the surgical robotics market, with its flagship da Vinci system, bolstered by years of sales and exposure prior to any competitors reaching the market. Intuitive has been slowly expanding the indications for its da Vinci system, as well as expanding geographically into more countries around the world, leading to even more share. The US represents the largest market of surgical robotics. CMR Surgical has yet received FDA approval, but competition has become intense as more players, including Verb Surgical, Titan Medical, and medical giant Medtronic, are expected to debut their own surgical robots in the near future.