African Startups That Will Showcase their Innovations at VivaTech Conference


Sanofi is a biopharmaceutical company that operates globally. It is also a partner of Viva Technology. The startup announced the 10 startups from Africa which were selected to participate in its Sanofi Afric@Tech initiative as finalists. Thanks to Ventureburn for giving the first hand information. The 10 startups are expected to showcase their innovation in the health sector to a panel of experts. This will take place at startup event VivaTech that will be hosted in Paris as from 24th to 26th May this year.

This will be the first time at the startup event where the track that is fully concerned with African innovation will be checked. Shortlisted projects will get financial support and mentor and coaching programs offered by Sanofi. This will help to ensure that there is a great partnership between startups and one of the Sanofi’s departments in the continent. Sanofi’s Afric@Tech initiative was launched officially in February this year. This made the company to put up three challenges with a goal of improving the African healthcare practices. The first challenge targets solutions which diagnose diseases that are not communicable.

The second challenge aims at telemedicine solutions integrated with mobile payment. The last challenge aimed at multi-channel and multi-device solutions that can be used to inform and educate health professionals on diseases that are non-communicable. The finalists were picked from more than 180 applicants. Selections were done based on five different criteria such as, project maturity, proof of success is not less than one country in Africa, scientific feasibility, team experience and expertise, business and market potential. Below are the 10 selected startups:


The Pan-African based startup offers peer-to-peer free medical advice that links users to qualified doctors. Yapili was co-founded by Enya Seguin CEO, Sherzel Smith CHO, Fred Nnaji COO and Igne Degutye CTO back in 2014.

Vula Mobile

Based in South Africa, Vula Mobile is a medical referral firm that was launched in 2014. Founded by Dr. William Mapham, the startup is a winner of a number of awards in the health sector. It recently secured R1 million and its targeting to raise $500,000 to go in assisting at least 100,000 patients in 2018.


The Nigerian based startup is an e-learning website for health workers. Otrac was founded by Farida Kabir in 2016.

Appenberg Digital Publishing

The South African based startup was founded by a group based in Cape Town. The team includes Andrew Browne, Dr. Rory Leisegang a clinical consultant, Ryan Johnson, and Moegamat Johnson. The startup aims at improving education, provide and foster access to healthcare tools in remote areas by the use of digital tech. its main focus is to support the already existing digital resources that specifically operate in the region. Appenberg Digital Publishing also hopes to offer a center of excellence for training digital and healthcare education. the startup partnered with a number of universities and Western Cape-based stakeholders for its service delivery. So far it has put up a number of digital resources that includes e-learning platforms, websites and mobile apps that have offered e-learning.

KEA Medicals

Based in Benin, the startup has come up with a platform that uses the QR-code-embedded card for user’s medical identification. KEA Medicals was founded by Dr. Arielle Ahouansou in 2017.


Bisa means “ask” in the Ghanaian Twi language and it is a mobile technology that allows users with smart or feature phones have access to medical practitioners and information without being physically present at the hospital. This is an advantage to people who need medical care and advice but are not able to visit the hospital for various reasons like poverty, long queues at the hospital, the fear of stigmatization, especially for people who have symptoms of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) makes them embarrassed to seek the needed treatment. It was founded by Raindolf Owusu.

Informed Healthcare

The Egyptian based startup is a medical service provider that was founded by Amir Kalila back in 2014. Kalila is an Egyptian medical doctor and entrepreneurs who have his roots in Canada.


The Moroccan based startup offering solutions on the medical care in rural areas by the use of its mobile hospitals. MedTrucks was founded by Anass El Hilal and Asmae El Hilal in 2017.

Gifted Mom

Based in Cameroon, the startup tackles maternal and infant mortality using information sent to users via a smartphone app or SMS. Gifted Mom was founded by Conrad Dangu and Alain Nteff Gifted.


The Kenyan based startup came up with iSikCure, a mobile health information exchange. It allows users to access quality medicine at a pocket-friendly price. Sagitarix was founded in 2016 by Moka Lantum who is also the CEO.


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Written by Denis Opudo

Am an engineer who's a tech blogger, hit me up on [email protected] and we base our discussion on technology in Africa and the rest of the world.
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