(Adds details, context) FRANKFURT, March 28 () – German medical devices maker Avatera Medical is considering a stock market flotation as it aims to reap proceeds to finance expansion, people close to the matter said. The company is developing robots, which assist surgeons in carrying out minimally invasive operations, but which have not yet been approved by regulators and have not been brought to market. Based in the eastern German city of Jena, the firm is majority-owned by investment firm Sapinda, co-founded by Lars Windhorst, hailed in the 1990s as a shooting star entrepreneur by former chancellor Helmut Kohl. His investments have seen a mixed performance. The initial public offering, in which Avatera Medical is expected to raise less than 100 million euros, could take place later this year, one of the people said. Sapinda declined to comment. Avatera Medical was founded in 2011 by a German surgeon and employs more than 100 staff. As it does not yet sell any products, it is unprofitable. The Dutch-based holding Avateramedical N.V. posted a 6 million euro loss in 2017, according to its financial report. The company’s plans come as several other healthcare start-ups – such as Biontech and Centogene – are also considering stock market flotations. (Reporting by Arno Schuetze Editing by Thomas Seythal/Keith Weir)Our Standards:The Thomson Trust Principles.