When we walk into a technology shop, it's not surprising to see people with those huge glasses that evade us from everything around us. Yes, you're right, we're talking about virtual reality goggles.
For some time now we have been able to see them in almost all establishments specialising in technology products and we are more than used to these glasses being used in the world of gaming, or what amounts to the same as video games. But it is also being applied to more serious sectors such as healthcare. That is why on this occasion we analyse the investment of virtual reality in healthcare.
However, the company Virtual Bodyworks has given virtual reality another meaning by using it in physical and psychological therapies.
One of the programmes called VRespect.Me is used in therapies against gender violence, which consists of putting the abuser in the role of the victim to work on empathy. With this programme, some 200 aggressors have been treated, which is why the start-up has prepared a financing round of two million euros for the commercialisation of the product.
Icortex is another programme used for the rehabilitation of muscle injuries. The aim is to reactivate immobilised muscles through neural impulses.
Finally, the ConVrself programme is intended for psychological therapies. In this case, the user initially plays the role of the patient, where he explains his problems and then plays the role of the psychologist, listening to himself and explaining his problems. In this way, it is the patient himself who gives himself advice.
Virtual Bodyworks is a pioneer in this product, even though last year it had a turnover of €500,000, which it expects to exceed this year. Its main objective is to become a benchmark in healthcare virtual reality and thus increase its growth from 2019 onwards.
The Barcelona start-up Psious, which offers 3D solutions designed to treat anxiety disorders such as fear of flying, agoraphobia or panic at heights, received a €1M funding round in 2015 led by the venture capital of Silicon Valley, Rothenberg Ventures.
The Guipuzcoa company Nesplora analyses human behaviour through technology. It offers clinicians and researchers standardised and scientifically validated technological solutions that enable them to study, diagnose or treat human behaviour accurately, improving patients' quality of life. It has received the non-repayable grant EMS phase 2 1.5m in 2017 and the support of a family office.
On a global level, the 100M$ round in February 2016 by the company MindMaze which builds human-machine interfaces by combining mixed reality, artificial intelligence, brain imaging and neuroscience.
But there have also been two significant rounds in 2018. Vicarious Surgical which develops virtual reality software for minimally invasive surgery procedures has received 16.75M$ in April 2018 and Palo Alto-based company SyncThink provides neuro-tech with critical intellectual property in eye-tracking metrics and devices. It has received a 3.5M$ round led by Quadrant Management.