Kenya’s MyDawa aims to be an all-in-one health platform backed by $20 million funding

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Kenyan e-health startup MyDawa has raised $20 million from private equity investor Alta Semper Capital to expand its regional reach and product offerings with the aim of becoming an all-in-one health platform for users.

MyDawa, which launched in 2016, has diversified from an e-pharmacy to include online and in-person consultations, as well as laboratory services at its expanding network of walk-in pharmacies and health centers.

It has also launched its own branded products, and plans to open up its technology infrastructure from telehealth to fulfillment, helping other businesses in the health sector to scale. It claims to have already inked deals with some of Kenya’s biggest clinic chains, which are looking to expand their reach.

Additionally, MyDawa has acquired Uganda’s Guardian Health, one of the many acquisitions and collaborations it aims to make as it expands beyond Kenya. The growth plans will be steered by new CEO Priscilla Muhiu, formerly of Glovo Kenya.

Commenting on the funding and newest acquisition, MyDawa co-founder Neil O’Leary said: “Alta Semper’s ambition exactly matches that of MyDawa, and it brings the drive, connections and clout to succeed. Three years ago, AAIC, a Japanese-backed African healthcare fund, joined as our first external investor and now the team has been augmented in the strongest manner possible.”

“MyDawa now has both a solid secure base and a great expansion opportunity based on a great offering which improves health outcomes. Guardian is a great first step on fulfilling our ambition,” O’Leary added.

MyDawa raised $3 million from AAIC’s Africa Healthcare Fund in 2019, and has also received $1.2 million grant funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation to fight the spread of HIV/AIDS by increasing access to PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) medication.

Alta Semper CEO Afsane Jetha, said the investment marked the PE firm’s first entry into digital healthcare in Africa, regarded as one of the sectors with the potential for great growth in the coming years.

“MyDawa was the logical choice for us as their groundbreaking technology, underpinning a scalable business model, along with regulatory knowhow and market entry experience, mapped so well to our own strategy. The drive to increase the access to good advice and safe and affordable medication is core to our overall mission of democratizing access to health and well-being across the African continent,” said Jetha.

“With consumer spending in Africa projected to reach $2.1 trillion by 2025, this represents one of the continent’s largest business opportunities. Therefore, the investment into MyDawa is part of our strategic aim at meeting this growing demand by investing in locally produced and value-priced consumer goods and services.”

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