SUNNYVALE — Intuitive, a company known for its robotic-assisted surgery devices, is joining the venture capital bandwagon with the launch of Intuitive Ventures. The inaugural $100 million fund will invest in U.S. and international startups that will be the future of minimally invasive care.
Intuitive Ventures is focused on investment opportunities in digital tools, precision diagnostics, focal therapeutics and platform technologies that share Intuitive’s commitment to advancing positive outcomes in healthcare. The fund will support independent initiatives in the direct and adjacent fields of minimally invasive care and marks the entrance into the venture capital space for parent company Intuitive.
“The future of minimally invasive care spans the patient journey from early diagnosis to treatment and beyond,” said Julian Nikolchev, President of Intuitive Ventures. ”Intuitive Ventures is investing in cutting-edge innovation across the continuum of care to bring the future forward.”
Nikolchev brings a deep entrepreneurial and operational background with more than 30 years of experience in the development and commercialization of therapeutic medical devices, including leading early stage teams and technologies through growth and market transformation. He joined Intuitive Surgical in 2019 and will continue to serve as its Senior Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy.
Nikolchev is joined by Intuitive Ventures Director Dr. Oliver Keown MD, who joined Intuitive in 2019 to co-found the fund. Keown was previously an investor at GE Ventures where he drove international deal-flow and supported digital and MedTech portfolio companies operationally and at the board level. He also advised U.K., U.S. and global healthcare innovation projects across commercial, government, and academic fields.
“We are value-add investors who leverage access to Intuitive’s unique industry expertise and customer connections,” Keown said. “Our nimble structure and alignment with the startups we will back empower us to invest early and support our portfolio companies as they pioneer markets.’’