Cionic Raised $12.5M in Series A to Manufacture Its Neural Sleeve

Customers who bought Neural Sleeves through Cionic's Explorer Program will receive them in February 2023.

Cionic

The Neural Sleeve was designed to help people with conditions such as multiple sclerosis, stroke, cerebral palsy, and spinal cord injuries.

Cionic Inc. earlier this week announced it has raised $12.5 million in its Series A funding round. The San Francisco-based company said the money will be used for manufacturing and to help deliver its Cionic Neural Sleeve, which was designed to help people with certain neurological conditions to improve their walking abilities.

The funding follows the Neural Sleeve’s FDA clearance earlier this year.

“We are on the precipice of a global mobility crisis, as 20% of the world’s population is projected to have a movement disability by 2050,” said Jeremiah Robison, founder and CEO of Cionic. “It’s time to bring technological innovation to this growing problem. Forward-looking investors realize that we need to take action today, and we are proud to be backed by a group of investors who recognize the need for better solutions and have joined us in our mission to redefine human mobility.”

Neural Sleeve is the first product in Cionic’s growing platform

The company said the Cionic Neural Sleeve is the first product in its “human augmentation platform.” It is placed around a user’s leg and uses sensors, advanced algorithms, and electrical simulation to work. In total, the company has raised $23 million to build its platform, it added.

“The Series A financing will accelerate research trials and commercialization of additional indications, driving a robust product pipeline across the spectrum of human mobility. CIONIC is scaling up its team in key functions such as R&D, engineering, operations, marketing, and customer service to support the next stage of growth,” it said.

Cionic was founded in 2018. Robinson said he was inspired to start the company after his daughter was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. He believed that the same technology that powered self-driving cars could also be “used to accelerate assistive technology and enable freer, more independent movement.”

Addressing a need

In a release announcing the funding, the company cited a report from the National Institute on Aging, which said mobility “is critical for functioning well and living independently.”

“Older adults who lose their mobility are less likely to remain living at home; have higher rates of disease, disability, hospitalization, and death; and have poorer quality of life,” added the NIA.

The company has tested out the Neural Sleeve in trials and found that 94% of those who participated saw improvement in their walking abilities.

“In a later study to determine the efficacy of the Neural Sleeve over time, the company collected patient-reported outcomes in addition to kinematic data. In addition to improvements in mobility, the number of users experiencing moderate to severe pain was reduced by 60%, and the number of users experiencing moderate to severe anxiety or depression was reduced by 75%,” the company added.

When the company received FDA clearance, it started selling the Neural Sleeve through its Founder’s Program. That program has since ended, but the company started taking preorders through its new Explorer Program, which closed this month. It said it will start delivering products to customers in that program in February 2023.

The round was led by BlueRun Ventures, with participation from Caffeinated Capital, EPIC Ventures, JobsOhio Growth Capital Fund, and LDV Capital.


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Cionic

The Neural Sleeve was designed to help people with conditions such as multiple sclerosis, stroke, cerebral palsy, and spinal cord injuries.


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