OurCrowd launches $200 million global health equity fund in collaboration with the WHO Foundation
The fund will focus on healthcare and the industries that are direct determinants of health, including energy transition and food agriculture
Venture capital firm OurCrowd announced on Monday the launch of a Global Health Equity Fund (GHEF) in collaboration with the WHO Foundation. The news was shared at the first major Clinton Global Initiative meeting convened since 2016, held in New York City alongside the meeting of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
The GHEF is a $200 million financial-first impact venture capital investment fund, focusing on breakthrough technology solutions that can impact healthcare globally.
The fund was conceived in the wake of the continuing Covid-19 pandemic, which sent shockwaves through health systems across the world. It exposed chronic weaknesses in health systems, the under-funding of healthcare provision, and inequitable access to technology solutions, including the vaccines, medicines, and diagnostics developed to fight Covid-19, which remain unavailable to the majority of the populations of low-income countries.
“Covid-19 was a wake-up call for me as an investor,” said Jon Medved, Founder, and CEO of OurCrowd. “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.”
The Global Health Equity Fund will focus on healthcare and the industries that are direct determinants of health, including energy transition and food agriculture, which together address markets worth trillions of dollars globally. The target portfolio companies will therefore not only innovate to improve medical care but will also work to mitigate current global health risks related to climate, fossil fuels, and looming food shortages.
“In every country in the world, too many men, women, and children lack access to adequate healthcare because of income disparities and systemic barriers that perpetuate inequity,” said Anil Soni, WHO Foundation’s CEO. “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 fund team will be led by OurCrowd CEO, Jon Medved, and OurCrowd Managing Partner, Dr. Morris Laster, with the support of the WHO Foundation’s Chief Impact Investment Officer, Geetha Tharmaratnam. It will be managed by an OurCrowd team of clinical experts with decades of experience in medical technologies and startup growth.