Koalaa's lifechanging soft prosthetics raise $1.2M funding

Koalaa develops soft modular prosthetics for below-elbow limb differences.
Koalaa's lifechanging soft prosthetics  raise $1.2M funding

Today soft prosthetics startup Koalaa closed a funding round of $1.2 million.

Koalaa was founded in 2020 and is on a mission to address the three main issues faced by the global limb difference community today - access, affordability and comfort.

 Unlike traditional prosthetics, Koalaa’s are made from fabric which is breathable and fits snugly against the arm. This means they are light, comfortable, suitable for even very young children, and can be sent worldwide for a fraction of the cost.

Different tools can be exchanged  to support various tasks.  Image: Koalaa.

Interchangeable tools, whose design is driven by user feedback and need, can be attached to the end of the sleeve and swapped in and out depending on the task the user would like to do. This means they can be used for an infinite number of activities. New users are linked with a limb buddy who provides support every step of the way.

The company developed the world’s first ‘early rehab’ prosthetic arm, which can be used just hours after surgery.

The round was initiated by existing investor British Design Fund and includes £200,000 secured from the Imperial College Enterprise Fund II (ICEF).

Nate Macabuag, founder of Koalaa, commented:

“A huge thank you to British Design Fund, Imperial College Enterprise Fund and our angel investors for their continuing support.

I still find it incredible that something which started out as a spark of an idea at University, has turned into a fully-fledged company, employing a team of 18 people and with around 1,000 people worldwide now using Koalaa prosthetics!”

Through our work with clinicians and NGOs, and also direct-to-consumer capabilities, we plan to continue to increase access to our prosthetics on a global scale.

It is our hope that one day soon our products will be made available through the NHS.”

Damon Bonser, CEO of the British Design Fund, shared:

“What has always really impressed us about Koalaa is the team’s focus on end users, their needs and feedback, which is central to every stage of the product development process.

Koalaa’s prosthetics also solve many of the challenges presented by traditional prosthetics and the growth of their global user base has been incredible to watch.”

Brijesh Roy, Head of Startup Investment Funds, Imperial College London, said:

“Nate and the team are a great example of the innovative startups being founded by Imperial College’s community.

Koalaa’s soft prosthetics are addressing an unmet need and the investment provides the financial fuel to scale this impact globally.”

The new funding supports ongoing product development, the growth of Koalaa’s team in both the UK and overseas and is seeing the company expand its work with clinicians and NGOs internationally, including increasing the supply of prosthetics to those within conflict zones.

Lead image: Nate Macabuag, Founder, Koalaa. Photo: uncredited.

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