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 May 2017, Amref Health Africa launched an ambitious initiative: The Innovate for Life Fund. This Fund supports African entrepreneurs in the development of innovative, sustainable and scalable solutions for a healthy Africa. The fund specifically focuses on the ‘missing middle’ – a growing community of entrepreneurs whose enterprises are too large for microcredit, but too small for traditional commercial investors. Via Amref these entrepreneurs will have access to detailed knowledge about healthcare in Africa and access to Amref’s extensive local and international network of stakeholders, donors and investors. Innovate for Life currently serves as an accelerator programme, but the objective is to grow into a private equity healthcare fund in four years’ time