LAGOS-BASED HELIUM HEALTH RAISES $10M SERIES A FUND FOR AFRICA EXPANSION
A Lagos-based healthtech Helium Health raises $10M Series A round, however, this brings the firm in a very good position during this financial and challenging period. With this development, the healthtech plans to use the latest funds to hire more staff and expand to East and North Africa, which will include Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda and not excluding Morocco according to co-founder ‘Adegoke Olubusi’.
The Lagos based startup is focused on offering a product suit that digitizes data, formalizes money, and enables telemedicine primarily for health care systems in Nigeria, Ghana, and Liberia. Speaking of the startup’s core intent, Olubusi who is the co-founded Helium Health with ‘Tito Ovia’ and ‘Dimeji Sofowora’ in 2016 aims at bringing better delivery of medical services in Nigeria and other parts of Africa.
Meanwhile, when the founders initially set out as regards research for the subject healthtech – Helium, they figured out vacuums on medical data across Africa’s healthcare infrastructure. Thus, Olubusi said:
“It’s really about tackling three core problems that we see in the healthcare sector in Africa: inefficiency, fragmentation and lack of data”, adding that
“We figured out very quickly that that is a long term problem to solve. And the best way to get the data and access to it is to give simple technology to the providers and let them use it to make their lives more efficient”. Credit – TechCrunch
Prior to Helium Health raising the said sum, the Healthtech’s platform offers tech solution services and developer resources for administration, financial management, and medical records. In the process, has put in place digital payment and credit products for hospitals and insurance providers.
The startups’ also has a number of core product deployed in various areas of healthcare services for healthcare bodies with application for providers, patients, payment, and partners.
In addition to the latest development, the startup also claims is launching a series of new products, such as the MyHelium Patient app designed to facilitate appointments and information sharing between healthcare provider and citizens. Also in a bid to respond to COVID-19 spread in Nigeria coupled with lockdowns in the states affected, has accelerated deployment of a telemedicine platform.
“In the last three weeks since we launched we’ve had roughly 360 hospitals sign up, and they’ve had thousands of [online] visits already”, Olubusi added.
The healthtech initially got the attention of Silicon Valley accelerator Y-Combinator, which had previously accepted the startup into its spring 2017 batch. However, this round of investment was led by Global Ventures and Africa Healthcare Masterfund which also witnessed the participation of Tencent and additional Y-Combinator support.
Meanwhile, Global Ventures General Partner ‘Noor Sweid’ also confirmed the Dubai based fund’s co-lead of the round, adding that the firm will take a Helium Health board seat.
Nigeria which is Africa’s most populous and economic country is ranked 142nd out of 195 countries on health performance indicators in The Lancet’s 2018 Healthcare Access and Quality Index. This in no doubt is an outcome of poor funding coupled with political influence on the country’s health system. However, better monetization and organization of hospitals could potentially strengthen and lure more doctors back to the continent – precisely Nigeria.
Lastly, is the current pandemic a huge source of the subject healthcare’s latest? (funding). It’s evident COVID-19 and the lockdowns are exposing the country’s healthcare inadequacies as Olubusi claimed.
What’s your take as Helium Health raises the said sum?