Villgro supported a pan-African initiative to support the commercialisation and impact of promising early and growth-stage companies with grants and access to market acceleration support. The program aims to help scale African health tech businesses that bring high-quality health products (medicines, consumables, medical devices, assistive technologies, etc.) closer to where patients are, at affordable prices.
We started the project with a planning session followed by a call for applications. We received 181 applications for East Africa. After pre-screening and presentation to the selection committee, 8 companies were selected.
An onboarding session was held with the top 8 companies to take them through what to expect from the program and introduce them to their assigned analysts. The analyst had a follow-up introduction meeting with the startup where they filled out a needs assessment form of the startups (1) access to market needs and (2) investment readiness needs.
From the needs assessment, a work plan was developed whereby the startups will get customised support and expert coaching during their bi-weekly check-ins with the analysts.
Initial priority was given to prepare the startups for an event in Nigeria, with a walk through of investor lookbooks and a discussion around the best approach with each investor. This was followed by pitch preparation support and on the ground support from two Villgro Africa staff.