The inaugural ‘Innovate for Life Accelerator’ was a success last year. The program created the opportunity to combine the experience, expertise, and network from… read more
‘We offer African entrepreneurs our 60 years of experience in the African health sector and we open up our strong network to co-develop innovative home-grown solutions for better health in Africa!’
Dr Githinji Gitahi, Group CEO, Amref Health Africa
With less than 1% of global health expenditure and only 3% of the world’s health workers, Africa accounts for almost half the world’s deaths of children under five, has the highest maternal mortality rate, and bears a heavy toll from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. As the population in Africa increases rapidly while the existing health systems are not expanding, the situation will likely deteriorate. A new generation of African entrepreneurs has recognized the need to develop novel technological solutions but are faced with a lack of support for early-stage entrepreneurs.
The Innovate for Life Fund aims to invest in African health entrepreneurs to accelerate home-grown health solutions for the African market. We offer African health sector-specific support: knowledge, network and access to funding. This is combined with business coaching by an experienced fund management organization.
In 2017, The Innovate for Life Fund supported an inaugural cohort of 6 entrepreneurs chosen from a total of 246 applications. Through the accelerator program the entrepreneurs were able to connect with major players in the healthcare entrepreneurship space including corporates like GE and MERCK, government related institutions and potential partners and investors. Collaborations were made and partnership deals hatched.
In 2018, the fund will offer a health specific 3 month accelerator embedding a maximum of six talented entrepreneurs. The accelerator will combine virtual and in-residence interactions at Amref Africa headquarters in Nairobi. The entrepreneurs will enjoy the support of Amref Health Africa’s facilities and their extensive health network in addition to tailored business coaching by Grassroots Business Fund.
In January 2019, a maximum of three entrepreneurs will be invited to partner with Amref Health Africa, which will offer follow up support and joint outreach to investors both in Africa and worldwide.
Who are we looking for? We are looking for passionate entrepreneurs with an innovative product or service that is already in the market and aims to improve primary health care in Africa. These entrepreneurs will need to convince the panelists on the sustainability and scalability of their business case. To stimulate home-grown innovation, the Innovate for Life Fund targets entrepreneurs based in Sub Saharan Africa countries and/ or with origins from Sub Sahara Africa. A health panel and selection committee will vet the applicants and their decision will be final.
WHAT DO WE OFFER?
The opportunity to develop your proposition in a strategic partnership with Africa’s leading health organization;
- A tailor-made, health sector specific training and mentoring program divided in two phases. Phase I: 8 weeks, 6 entrepreneurs. Phase II: 4 weeks with the top 3 entrepreneurs.
- In a small group of maximum 6 entrepreneurs;
- Guidance of an experienced, international fund management organization;
- Access to key African stakeholders in the health sector;
- Access to an international network of donors, investors and (corporate) partners;
- Long term strategic partnership;
ACCES TO FINANCE AND MARKETS
The Innovate for Life Fund supports innovative entrepreneurs towards follow up investments. To do this traditional (impact) investors and donors will be engaged from the start, via the Amref network of offices in Europe, Northern America and Canada, to follow them on their entrepreneurial journey and to invest when appropriate.
Deadline for applications: 15th June 2018
Selection process: August 2018
Accelerator programme: September – December 2018
For more information and Terms and Conditions visit: www.innovate4lifefund.com