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HealthTech Hub Africa Launches the 2023 HealthTech Challenge for Startups and Scale-ups

HealthTech Challenge is open to Startups from Uganda, Rwanda and all other African Countries. Selected startups will benefit from a 10-month health and technology accelerator program, access to a public-private partner network, and funding opportunities, among others.

Kigali’s HealthTech Hub Africa, founded by the Novartis Foundation and the Norrsken Foundation, and based in Kigali, today announced the second Africa HealthTech Challenge, open to growth startups and scale-ups.

HealthTech Hub Africa is a health tech accelerator with a physical co-working and community space that aims to drive the development of health technologies in Africa and fast-track such innovations in public health systems through collaboration with government partners.

The challenge is a competition that selects 30 high-impact pan-African health technology startups and 10 scale-ups with business-to-government solutions in the areas of cardiovascular health, breast cancer, virtual care and health, or the use of data for decision-making in health. Participating startups are expected to have business models that can deliver transformational population health impact in Africa.

“We are excited to build on the success of the first cohort of 30 startups and the excellent collaboration with the Government of Rwanda,” said Ann Aerts, the Head of the Novartis Foundation. “This is a great opportunity for us to help tackle cardiovascular population health and other health challenges in Africa by leveraging local solutions, validating them, and supporting their integration in local health systems.”

The HealthTech Hub Africa Challenge welcomes applications from any African country with validated solutions that already demonstrate positive health impact. The selected startups will benefit from a 10-month health and technology accelerator program, access to a public-private partner network, funding opportunities to validate their innovations in public health systems and 24/7 access to a state-of-the-art coworking space that offers community engagement and partner matchmaking.

Selected startups from the HealthTech Challenge will benefit from full-year access to a state-of-the-art co-working space. These startups will participate in the 2023 HealthTech.
Selected startups from the HealthTech Challenge will benefit from full-year access to a state-of-the-art co-working space. These startups will participate in the 2023 HealthTech.

“We are excited to be launching yet another search for a new cohort of technology innovations designed to address health challenges in Africa. The HealthTech Hub Africa uses its annual challenge to bring together startups from across the health technology environment to innovate and collaborate, with a mission to transform healthcare for low-income and underserved communities,” said Pascal Murasira, Managing Director of Norrsken East Africa.

The startups from the HealthTech Hub 2022 cohort have delivered a significant impact. They increased their beneficiaries from 113,091 in January 2022 to 634,940 in July 2022, collectively raised more than $10.8 million, and created over 300 full-time jobs across Africa.

“Agile multistakeholder collaboration is fundamental to fast-tracking HealthTech innovation. The HealthTech Hub has been a great mechanism to do just that, enabling a direct link between government, civil society, and innovators to co-design HealthTech applications that are aligned with national priorities as well as policy instruments that enable a conduce environment for innovation,” said Joris Cyizere, Managing Director of the Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution Rwanda.

Applications for the 2023 HealthTech Hub Africa Challenge should be submitted through http://www.thehealthtech.org.

Eligibility Criteria

The HealthTech Hub Challenge is open to all HealthTech startups with the following mandatory conditions:

  1. Evidence of a legal entity registered in an African country.
  2. Clearly demonstrated population health impact through their solution.
  3. Teams of two or more full-time employees can apply, and those with a gender-balanced team will be prioritized.
  4. Startups must focus on one or more of the four thematic areas of the Hub: cardiovascular health, breast cancer, virtual health and care, and optimization of data-driven decision-making.
  5. Growth startups applicant do not have to be part of another accelerator program in the same year if they are selected.

There are two application tracks, for which organizations can apply only once a year:

Growth startups’ additional eligibility criteria and conditions:

  1. Minimum Viable Product exists.
  2. At least 5.000 beneficiaries are already directly impacted by the solution.
  3. All applicants must be generating revenue.
  4. The startup team needs to dedicate at least 5 hours a month to the program and physically attend the 2 annual HealthTech Summits in 2023.

Scale-ups additional evaluation criteria and conditions:

  1. Meet all criteria for growth startups.
  2. Have at least 50.000 beneficiaries directly impacted by the solution

How to apply

Applicants must apply through a web portal http://www.thehealthtech.org  from Sept 1, 2022,  and they will be informed of all processes after applying.

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