02/07/2013

Sotera Wireless Raises $14.8 Million Series D Financing

By: Neil Verse

Feb 7, 2013 -- Sotera Wireless, maker of the wrist-worn ViSi Mobilewireless vitals monitoring system, has landed $14.8 million in fresh capital, including $1.33 million from Safeguard Scientifics and an undisclosed amount from another new investor, Delphi Ventures.

Other participants in this round include previous shareholders Sanderling Ventures, Qualcomm Ventures, EDBI, Intel Capital, Cerner Capital and the West Health Investment Fund, according to Wayne, Pa.-based Safeguard. With its investment, Safeguard gains a seat on Sotera's board of directors and now holds a 7.7 percent stake in Sotera. Safeguard also has an agreement to increase its share to 20 percent under certain, unspecified scenarios.

"We believe that Sotera's ViSi Mobile addresses a large market, with the opportunity to revolutionize the way hospitals monitor patient vital signs. ViSi Mobile fills an unmet medical need, has the potential to reduce healthcare spending, and can rapidly improve patient management while achieving significant growth," Safeguard Executive VP and Managing Director James A. Datin, who is the newest Sotera board member, says in a press release.

"Through this financing, we can provide Sotera with the necessary resources to help increase ViSi Mobile's penetration into hospitals throughout the United States, and encourage the development of other, complementary products that build upon Sotera's proprietary technology," Datin adds.

San Diego-based Sotera will use the cash infusion to augment its sales network and add channel distributors, the company says. "With $14.8 million in additional capital, we believe that we can accelerate our commercialization and clinical development, and expand the availability of ViSi Mobile to the more than 5,000 hospitals in the United States," Sotera CEO Tom Watlington explains.

ViSi Mobile got a major publicity boost a couple of weeks ago when Dr. Eric Topol, who helped develop the wrist monitor at Scripps Health in San Diego, showed off the device in his appearance on "Rock Center with Brian Williams" that aired Jan. 24 on NBC.

The product gained full FDA 5lO(k) clearance last August.