Health and beauty company Clicks to acquire Pick n Pay’s pharmacy business

SOUTH AFRICA – Health and beauty company Clicks, plans to acquire the retail pharmacy business of Pick n Pay, Clicks Group has said in a statement. Clicks is the largest retail pharmacy network in the country. The acquisition will include 25 in-store pharmacies that will be rebranded to Clicks which will take the national presence of the health and beauty retailer to 632 pharmacies. In terms of the proposed transaction, Clicks will acquire the pharmacy licences and ethical drug stock, while all staff employed in the pharmacies will transfer from…

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Biotech startup Impulse Biomedical raises funding from PE firm Futuregrowth

SOUTH AFRICA – Biomedical engineering startup Impulse Biomedical has raised funding from the Futuregrowth Development Equity Fund (DEF) to speed development and release of its flagship device. The Impulse device, the ZiBiPen, was designed by engineering graduates Gokul Nair and Giancarlo Beukes while completing their Masters’ Degrees in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Cape Town (UCT). The device aims to revolutionise the emergency treatment of life-threatening anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction that occurs when a patient is exposed to a foreign substance such as an insect bite or certain foods.  Without…

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Healthcare startup mPharma to launch Haltons Pharmacies in Ethiopia

ETHIOPIA – Ghanaian health tech startup mPharma has signed a franchise agreement with Belayab Pharmaceuticals to open Haltons Pharmacies in Ethiopia Through the agreement, mPharma will leverage its technology platforms, insights, and extensive experience working with hospitals and retail pharmacies across Africa to help Ethiopia achieve universal medical coverage to all its patients. mPharma and Belayab Pharmaceuticals aim to open two operational pharmacies in Addis Ababa this year.  mPharma Currently operates in Ghana, Nigeria, Zambia, Rwanda, and Kenya and serves about a million patients every year through over 300 partner pharmacies.…

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South Africa’s renewables firm Renergen develops ultra-cold transport solution for vaccines

SOUTH AFRICA – HELIUM and natural gas company Renergen has successfully operated its first Cryo-Vacc prototype, which has been designed and patented to transport and store ultra-cold biologics for up to 25 days or longer, where access to an external power source is not possible. Companies and governments around the world are working on ways to establish cold chain storage and delivery systems for vaccines such as Pfizer and BioNTech shots which must be shipped and stored at ultra-cold temperatures and can only last at standard fridge temperatures for up…

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Pharmaceutical group MSD appoints Zwelethu Bashman as new managing director

SOUTH AFRICA – International healthcare and pharmaceuticals group MSD has appointed Zwelethu Bashman as the next managing director of its operations in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa effective February 1, 2021, succeeding Dr Priya Agrawal, who has been appointed chief behavioural science officer in global vaccines in the international operations of the company. Zwelethu joined MSD South Africa as director for HIV and vaccines in 2019 the group’s successes during his tenure included the signing of voluntary license agreements with other healthcare companies to allow the marketing of generic versions of…

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European Investment Bank launches US$60.9m Africa pharmaceutical manufacturing program

AFRICA – The European Investment Bank (EIB) has launched the first ever scheme to strengthen local production of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients in Africa and scale up drug manufacturing essential to improve public health. The EIB’s new US$60.9 million pharmaceutical investment initiative, initiated together with kENUP Foundation, will contribute to reducing dependency on drug imports and address medical supply chain weaknesses linked to COVID-19. The programme will improve availability of specialist drugs and tackle supply chain challenges that currently damage public health across Africa. Scaling up pharmaceutical investment in Africa will…

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IFC to invest US$12.6m in Ugandan pharmaceutical company, AK Life

UGANDA – The International Finance Corporation plans to invest US$12.6 million in the form of a loan in AK Life, a top pharmaceutical manufacturer, and distributor based in Uganda. The medical company operates under the brand name ‘Abacus Pharma’ in Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, and Burundi. Abacus Pharma’s primary business is the distribution of generic medicine, imported from China and India, throughout the East African region. The company has a 4,000 m2 warehouse in Uganda and two smaller warehouses in Tanzania and Burundi. Abacus Pharma also manufactures IV fluids, eye,…

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Medsaf raises US$3.5m seed round to move into big data space and geographic expansion

NIGERIA – Medsaf, an enterprise pharmaceutical supply chain solution, has raised US$3.5 million seed round as it continues to move into the lucrative big data space. The startup is in the process of packing more than 89 million data points on the movement of medications in Nigeria for sale to pharmaceutical companies and has made two data sales to date. Founded in 2017 by Vivian Nwakah, Medsaf connects suppliers to hospitals and pharmacies directly in order to make the pharmaceutical supply chain more efficient. “The lack of proper supply chain…

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