Exoskeleton solutions developer Ekso Bionics has agreed to form a joint venture (JV) with Zhejiang Youchuang Venture Capital Investment and Zhejiang Silicon Paradise Asset Management Group in China to cater to Asian markets.
With a capital of at least $100m, the JV will be focussed on the development, commercialisation and support of exoskeleton products in China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia.
Ekso Bionics will licence its manufacturing technology and provide relevant Chinese patent rights to the JV. In turn, the company will gain 20% ownership in the new entity.
The other partners have committed to support the JV with more than $90m in cash. It is expected that the new entity will help in treating 12 million stroke patients in China alone.
Moreover, the JV will build a manufacturing facility in Zhejiang, China for producing the company’s products at scale.
Ekso Bionics exoskeleton solutions are designed to support or enhance human strength, endurance and mobility across medical and industrial applications.
Ekso Bionics president and CEO Jack Peurach said: “This JV is a transformative opportunity both for Ekso Bionics and for the millions of Chinese stroke and spinal cord injury patients who currently have limited access to advanced rehabilitation technologies.
“This JV positions us to become the leader in both medical and industrial exoskeletons in China.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Ekso Bionics will get royalties on the medical and industrial product sales made by the JV in China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia.
In addition, Zhejiang Youchuang Venture Capital Investment and its related parties will make $10m equity investment in Ekso Bionics’ parent organisation.
The company noted that $5m will be invested upfront, while the remaining will be provided after the JV commences shipping.
Ekso Bionics expects the JV to provide access to the stroke rehabilitation services market in China, boost its revenue opportunities and support expansion into additional markets.