South Africa to host COVID-19 vaccine technology transfer hub for the continent

AFRICA – The World Health Organization (WHO) has picked South Africa to host the continent’s first messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine technology transfer hub for COVID-19 vaccines. The move comes after the WHO issued an expression of interest in April, to establish COVID-19 mRNA vaccine technology transfer hubs to scale up production and access to COVID vaccines in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO describes the transfer hubs as training facilities, where the technology is established at industrial scale and clinical development performed. Interested manufacturers from LMICs can receive training and any necessary licences to the…

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Teeth-straightening startup BASMA.com closes US$3m Series A funding to scale up operation

MENA – BASMA.com, a teeth-straightening D2C startup, has closed US$3 million Series A funding led by MEVP to scale up its healthtech platform in the MENA region. The funding also saw the participation of SOSF, IM capital and returning investors iSME, Cedar Mundi Ventures and IFA capital. BASMA.com is a digital healthcare platform working on redefining the orthodontics support experience with a chain of digitally-equipped clinics to offer faster and more precise treatments through its licensed partners. It uses ISO and CE certified invisible teeth aligners, 3D-printed in-house, to assist…

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Nigerian health tech start-up Helium Health introduces new products as it enters Kenyan market

KENYA – E-health start-up Helium Health of Nigeria, has partnered with three local providers, Philips Healthcare Technologies, Carepay, and Savannah Informatics to  launch its operations in Kenya. The partnership will enable it to integrate new services, including an EMR to serve the entire East African market. Launched in 2016, Helium Health is the largest Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and Hospital Management Information (HMI) Systems provider in West Africa.  The start-up was founded by three entrepreneurs, Adegoke Olobusi, Tito Ovia and Dimeji Sofowora, with a shared passion for solving the practical problems that they identified…

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Construction company JBN to construct first state-owned cancer and cadio-vascular center

NIGERIA – Julius Berger Nigeria Plc (JBN), a construction company, has secured contract to build Nigeria’s first state-owned cancer and cadio-vascular diseases diagnostic and treatment centre in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, said the multi-billion naira project is for a 14-month completion period, emphasising that JBN, would complete and deliver the project for inauguration as scheduled. “We chose Julius Berger to help us build it not only well, but also successfully within its scheduled completion time as experience have taught us the company always do with…

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Organon launches in Egypt with a focus on women’s health

EGYPT – Organon, a global company focused on women’s health, has launched its presence in Egypt in a move to transform and further prioritized women’s health in the country. The focus on diversity both on an internal and external level will lead generational change in the healthcare industry of Egypt. Organon takes a broad view of women’s health, with the goal of expanding beyond reproductive health to help address the conditions that are unique to women, but also conditions that disproportionately affect women or have an especially heavy burden on…

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mPharma, Sunculture join Morgan Stanley’s inaugural sustainable business collaborative cohort

AFRICA – Two African start-ups are among five breakthrough innovative companies that will receive awards and participate in Morgan Stanley’s first initiative that aims to advance systemic solutions for complex sustainability challenges across the World. The five companies include mPharma based in Ghana and Suncluture from Kenya: plus, MySoc from the US, Siklus from Indonesia and Trees as Infrastructure from the UK. Organised by Morgan Stanley, the leading American investment bank and financial services company, the Sustainable Solutions Collaborative, which is organised by the firm’s Institute for Sustainable Investing targets…

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MasterCard foundation backs COVID-19 vaccine acquisition with US$1.3b

AFRICA – The Mastercard Foundation has announced that it will deploy US$1.3 billion over the next three years in partnership with the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) to save the lives and livelihoods of millions of people in Africa and hasten the economic recovery of the continent. The Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative will acquire vaccines for at least 50 million people, support the delivery of vaccinations to millions more across the continent, lay the groundwork for vaccine manufacturing in Africa through a focus on human capital development, and…

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Orange, AXA Assurance acquire controlling stake in health-tech company DabaDoc

MOROCCO – Orange Middle East and Africa and AXA Assurance Maroc have acquired a majority stake in DabaDoc, a Moroccan health-tech company digitalizing access to healthcare in Africa.  The financial terms of the transaction, announced Monday, have not been disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021.  “DabaDoc, a leading health-tech platform in Africa, is supporting the digital transformation of healthcare professions,” Zineb Drissi-Kaitouni, co-founder and CEO of DabaDoc, said.  “Orange’s investment in DabaDoc and AXA’s renewed investment will strengthen DabaDoc’s growth ambitions through Orange and AXA’s presence in Africa and the Middle East.…

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Afreximbank launches AMCE project in Nigeria set to begin in the last quarter of 2021

NIGERIA – African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced the commencement of its African Medical Centre of Excellence (AMCE) project in Abuja, Nigeria. It will provide world-class care to both low and high-income patient groups across the continent. The Bank recently formalised its long-term collaboration with King’s College Hospital, London (KCH) on the project when it signed an agreement appointing KCH the Clinical Partner of the AMCE. Construction of the Abuja AMCE is scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter of 2021 and commissioning is scheduled for the first quarter of…

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E-health startup CribMD raises US$2.6m seed round for its expansion plan

NIGERIA – CribMD, an e-health startup which describes itself as “Uber for doctors”, has raised a US$2.6 million seed round from US accelerator Sputnik ATX and The Guardian Nigerian, as it looks to expand upon its initial traction. Launched in June 2020, CribMD connects users with doctors for house calls and telemedicine services via its on-demand platform, allowing them to schedule appointments from the comfort and safety of their home, on their own schedule. “We’re revolutionising each and every step of the care process, from affordability, patient-provider matching, to billing,…

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