OurCrowd, a global online investment platform, has announced the launch of a Global Health Equity Fund (GHEF) in partnership with the WHO Foundation.
According to OurCrowd, the GHEF is a $200 million impact venture capital investment fund, focusing on breakthrough technology solutions that can impact healthcare globally. The fund was conceived following the COVID-19 health crisis, which challenged all corners of the world, exposing shortcomings in health policy and government management.
OurCrowd CEO and founder Jon Medved, said COVID-19 was a wake-up call:
“The pandemic opened my eyes to health inequity around the world and reinforced the potential of innovative technology to save lives. I am proud of our track record of identifying healthcare investments that have delivered value to patients and investors. This new fund builds on that success with the explicit orientation of having impact. The collaboration with the WHO Foundation will allow us to identify even more exciting investments and facilitate the commitment of investors and entrepreneurs to equitable access to the technologies we support.”
GHEF is expected to focus on healthcare and the industries that are direct determinants of health, including “energy transition and food agriculture.” Investments will also target firms that work to mitigate current global health risks related to climate, fossil fuels, and looming food shortages.
As part of the offering, there is an “Access Pledge,” – a commitment that porfolio companies are accessible and affordable for the masses.
Anil Soni, WHO Foundation’s CEO, explained that in every county there is a lack of access to adequate healthcare due to income disparities and systemic barriers:
“Despite clear models for successfully balancing economic return with equitable access, such as the provision of medicines for HIV and AIDS, the world failed to deliver solutions for COVID-19 to everyone, everywhere. It is imperative that we deploy solutions in response to that failure, including directing investment to innovation and aligning both to equity as a goal from the start. The Global Health Equity Fund places equity at the heart, with a new ask of investors and entrepreneurs through the Foundation’s Access Pledge. We are delighted to collaborate with OurCrowd to work towards our shared goal of impact on health equity.”
OurCrowd says that they share the mission with the WHO Foundation of “acting as standard bearers within the investment and global health communities, demonstrating the viability of investing to get robust returns, and intended impact, with both goals benefiting from partnership across the private and public sectors.”
The fund team will be led by Medved, and OurCrowd Managing Partner, Dr. Morris Laster, with the support of the WHO Foundation’s Chief Impact Investment Officer, Geetha Tharmaratnam.
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