Nigeria’s Nguvu Health, Chekkit and 4 others selected into Google for Startups Accelerator 2021
For the second year in a row, the Google for Startups Accelerator is taking place virtually with startups from different parts of Africa joining its cohort. Nigerian startups dominate this year’s cohort with 6 out of 15 of them selected from the country. The remaining 9 are from South Africa, Kenya, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Ghana and Tunisia.
The 9 from other African countries are; Envisionit Deep AI (South Africa), Whoosh (South Africa), Khula! (South Africa), Angaza Elimu (Kenya), Ndovu (Kenya), PayWay (Ethiopia), Tabiri Analytics (Rwanda), Tendo (Ghana), Third.Design (Tunisia).
The number of startups selected from Nigeria dropped by 2 compared to the 8 that made it in 2020. The 2021 accelerator starts on Monday, June 21. Here are the 6 startups from Nigeria.
Chekkit is a startup that uses blockchain and data to help consumers check and confirm the authenticity of the consumer goods and pharmaceutical products that they purchase. Users can punch in the unique identification code for each product as a text message to USSD codes if they do not have access to the internet at the point of verification. Alternatively, they can also scan barcodes on the product to verify its authenticity.
On February 3, 2020, the startup was the only African startup that was selected into the 8th cohort of the Merck Accelerator program. The company was founded by Jide Asare and Dare Odumade in 2018. Since its inception, it has raised about $55,000 according to data from Crunchbase.
Emergency Response Africa
Another healthtech startup, Emergency Response Africa is the second Nigerian company that was selected for the accelerator. The startup is making critical help needed during emergency situations available quickly through its first responders. Help can be requested through its mobile app on both android and iOS devices.
Currently, Emergency Response Africa has 25 first responders and 9 emergency vehicles. It also partners with 10 hospitals and has provided help in 100 incidents so far. Individuals and families subscribe to its medical emergency services on a yearly basis. Subscription plans range from N45,000 for one person to N90,000 for families while larger groups can get a quote tailored to their needs.
The third startup is also in the healthtech sector. Gerocare is focused on providing access to quality and affordable healthcare for adults and the elderly in Nigeria. The service is particularly useful for people who are living away from their elderly family members but want to make sure that medical doctors visit them regularly.
Gerocare has different plans which range from 3 doctor visits per person per quarter for N30,000 to 12 doctor visits per person per year for N100,000. It was founded in 2017 by Ebi Ofrey (CEO), Ajibola Meraiyebu (COO), and Bruce Lucas (CTO).
OneHealth is an online store where people can get different medical items supplied to them. OneHealth’s platform provides drugs when the user provides a prescription for it. The products are classified into baby products, sexual products, Hair Health, Female Health, and others.
The startup has different Wellness Club plans that give users access to medications trackers, health trackers, health and fitness calculators as well as health and lifestyle trends. Its paid plans start from N1,000 for individuals and small families.
Nguvu Health‘s focus is to provide qualified mental health therapists to people when they need them from the convenience of their smartphones. The sessions create a safe space for people to talk to licensed therapists and maintain healthy mental health. They can be through chat or video and can happen as often as the user wants.
Nguvu plans start from $15 and are paid in advance before the session starts. The subscription plans available include quarterly, weekly, monthly, or yearly. The startup was founded by Joshua Koya and Tolulope Ogunjuyigbe. It currently has 26 therapists onboarded and plans to increase the number to 1,000 by the end of 2021.
Vittas International is a financing startup that is making it easier for individuals and businesses to have access to working capital. It was founded by Sulav Singh in 2019 and is headquartered in Lagos.
With the rest of the startups, the 6 from Nigeria will undergo the three-month Bootcamp. Part of the benefits they will receive includes access to Google engineers, resources, and mentors during and after the program.
They will also be included in the Google for Startups Accelerator Global Community and network of alumni and mentors. Furthermore, they will be given Google Cloud Credits as well as marketing spotlight opportunities. There is no funding or grant attached to the accelerator.
The Nigerian startups that were selected in 2020 are Credpal, Judy, Crop2Cash, Curacel, Stears, SmartHub, Festival Coins and Send.
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