Startup of the week: Open Bionics

  • Open Bionics was founded in 2014 by Joel Gibbard and Samantha Payne.
  • The startup has developed the world’s first clinically approved 3D printed bionic hand, available for both children and adults.
  • To date, Open Bionics has raised $8.9 million across 12 funding rounds.


Open Bionics logo

Open Bionics is working on “Turning Disabilities into Superpowers” and is our Startup of the Week for this week!

Open Bionics develops affordable prosthetics to support and enhance their users’ abilities. The startup has already developed a 3D printed bionic hand with multiple grips called the Hero Arm. This device is the first commercially available bionic limb from Open Bionics, dubbed “the most affordable multi-grip bionic arm ever”. The startup claims its product costs less than half the price of its closest competitor.

At the age of 17, co-founder Joel Gibbard began researching 3D prosthetics and robotic hands, fascinated by their movements. This led to Joel creating hundreds of prototypes of such prosthetics and founding Open Bionics with co-founder Samantha Payne in 2014.

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The Hero Arm is the world’s first clinically approved 3D printed bionic hand available for both children and adults. The prostheses are manufactured in Great Britain and are each specially designed for each client. A 3D scan of the user’s limb helps Open Bionics tailor their Hero Arm specifically for each client.

The Hero Arm is controlled by special sensors that detect muscle movements in the user’s arm. This helps users effortlessly control their bionic hand, with buttons, haptic vibrations and lights to offer intuitive notifications and further enhance the user’s control over the prosthetic’s movements.

Open Bionics is also developing prosthetic Hero Arms for children and is currently working with Disney to create a range of covers for them – designs including ones from the Marvel, Star Wars and Frozen universes.

Open Bionics Child Hero Arm

So far, the startup has raised $8.9 million in 12 funding rounds. One of their most recent rounds was announced in January 2019, a Serie A that raised £4.6million. They were also named in TechRound’s list Medical device startups are revolutionizing healthcare. Startup of the week: Open Bionics

Fry Electronics Team

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