Life Bank Nigeria Launches Digital Blood and Oxygen Bank in Ibadan

US-Based WorldCover InsurTech Raises $6m Series A Funding from Nigeria's EchoVC
LifeBank is one of EchoVC’s many Nigeria-based portfolio companies

Oluwadamilola Adebusoye

LifeBank has launched its digital blood and oxygen Bank in Ibadan, Nigeria’s third most populous city. LifeBank is a health startup that saves lives by speeding up blood and oxygen donations and deliveries from labs across the country to patients and doctors in hospitals.

According to the health ministry, Nigeria needs more than 1.7million units of blood every year. Unfortunately, the country has a major blood shortage. As a result of the absence of a centralised blood supply body and a deficit in blood donations, many patients die before they receive the blood they require.

LifeBank was founded in January 2016 by health manager, Temie Giwa-Tuboson. The founding was inspired by the birth of her first child and the complications from that experience. The startup boasts of saving up to 9,076 lives and serving 1,131 hospitals since its inception.

Although founded in Lagos State, LifeBank has steadily expanded, currently having branches in Abuja, Portharcourt and now, Ibadan.

The technology and logistics startup works by encouraging voluntary blood donation and providing a platform for hospitals to request for blood deliveries and find what they are lacking. A web application allows people to register as voluntary blood donors, book an appointment and find the nearest blood bank where blood donors are needed.

At life bank we give a service that makes the difference between life and death for so many people

Temie Giwa-Tuboson, founder of LifeBank
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Having met Temie during his first visit to Nigeria in 2016, Mark Zuckerberg made reference to the startup in a town hall meeting. He said: “If everyone had the opportunity to build something like this, then the world would be a better place…”

He further identified innovation as having the potential to impact the country and Africa as a whole.

Our goal is to be the supply chain engine for health systems in emerging markets. We’re not only focusing on blood, we also do emergency medical oxygen, so our plan is to add more to our portfolio and to reach every country on the continent, and even go beyond the continent to other emerging markets that have the same healthcare supply chain issue

Ifeoluwa Olokode, Patnership and Growth Lead , LifeBank

One of the challenges the startup faced was making deliveries amidst traffic. In other to get ahead of traffic, bikes are presently used to make deliveries.

The startup is determined to grow to up to a million active donors and reach every hospital within the cities they cover.

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