Afrimom are one of the only six startups that have received funding from the POTRAZ Innovation fund since the idea of the fund came forth almost 3 years ago.
Oh yes, the POTRAZ Innovation Fund
The first and only recipients of funding so far were announced in March last year. The six startups were given ‘blank cheques’ however. Not the blank cheques you are thinking of: they were not given a promise of unlimited resources but rather they were not told how much they got. It could have just been all smiles and waves for all we know.
The last time we checked in with them, they still had not received any funds. Maybe now they have.
Afrimom and WHO
Now, Afrimom, a health tech startup also entered the World Health Organisation’s Innovation Challenge. A total of 2471 startups applied from 77 countries, 44 of them being African. More than a third of these submissions were from women.
The response was very good especially considering that all the entries came in within 4 weeks. Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa said:
The extent of response from the Innovation Challenge affirms the enthusiasm, especially among young people, to make a difference and contribute to the health care system on the continent. Health innovators have found a new home at WHO, where their innovative ideas will be supported in partnership with our network of stakeholders
Among all the applications received, 639 made it through to the evaluation phase. This is a reflection of the challenges that innovators face in making progress from ideas to development and eventual broad-based application of their solutions.
From there only 30 startups remain and Afrimom is the only one from Zimbabwe.
The 30 finalists will be announced at the opening day of the second WHO Africa Health Forum in Praia, Cabo Verde, on 26 March 2019.