Financial-first impact investment fund will focus on breakthrough technology solutions that enable global health for all
New York – September 19, 2022 – OurCrowd, a leading global venture firm, announced today 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 unique financial-first impact venture capital investment fund, focusing on breakthrough technology solutions that can impact healthcare globally. It will fuel innovation and increase investment in the health sector, with the shared goals of delivering competitive returns to investors and ensuring equitable access to medical care.
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.
Associated with the fund is an Access Pledge, an innovation of the WHO Foundation to align investment with commitments by portfolio companies to ensure that their technology solutions are available, accessible, appropriate, and affordable for populations experiencing inequity, particularly in low-and middle-income settings.
As part of the Pledge, companies will seek to develop a commercially viable Access Plan relevant to their businesses. The WHO Foundation and OurCrowd will compose a global health advisory board to provide assistance to these companies so they can plan early for business models that combine economic return with equitable access.
“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 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.”
“As we face multiple existential challenges at the national and at the global level, we know that innovators and emerging leaders are getting things done,” said Greg Milne, CEO of the Clinton Global Initiative. “The Global Health Equity Fund will help unlock new opportunities to expand the reach of these innovative approaches around global health, by harnessing the power of investors around the world to support solutions being driven at the community level.”
WHO Foundation and Our Crowd share the aim 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 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.
Notes to Editors
OurCrowd is the online global venture investing platform that empowers individual accredited investors and institutions to invest and engage in emerging technology companies at an early stage. Since it was founded in 2013, OurCrowd has received over $1.9 billion in commitments, and deployed capital into more than 347 portfolio companies and 39 funds across five continents. OurCrowd’s startups have recorded 59 exits to date. Acclaimed by PitchBook as the most active venture investor in Israel, OurCrowd vets and selects companies across all sectors and stages, invests its own capital, and serves its global platform of over 215,000 registered members from 195 countries. For more information visit www.ourcrowd.com.
Past and current notable OurCrowd investments in health, AgTech, FoodTech, and energy transition sectors include:
- Alpha Tau Medical – Treating solid malignant tumors, using targeted alpha particle-based radiation, minimizing damage to healthy surrounding tissue. [NASDAQ: DRTS]
- BrainQ – Non-invasive technology that treats stroke and other neurological pathologies by using AI to detect neural patterns in patients and then tailor electromagnetic fields to target patients’ impaired neural networks, repair neural connectivity, and enhance natural rehabilitation.
- H2Pro – A novel and cost-effective system for the production of green hydrogen that allows on-premises production, enabling the wide-scale adoption of sustainable hydrogen fuel.
- Beyond Meat – Develops and manufactures a plant-based meat substitute, which can be instrumental in reducing greenhouse gases. [NASDAQ: BYND]
About the WHO Foundation:
Established in 2020 as an independent entity, the WHO Foundation complements and strengthens the work of WHO and its global network of partners by mobilizing new funding from diverse sources—including philanthropists, corporate entities, and the public—to power WHO’s mission. By addressing the world’s most urgent health issues in a new, transformative, catalytic way, the WHO Foundation aims to provide everyone, everywhere, a healthier, more equitable future.
The mission of the WHO Foundation is to mobilize more resources from businesses, philanthropists, and the public to achieve the goal of the World Health Organization (WHO): Health for all. For more information: https://who.foundation/
About the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI):
The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) convenes global and emerging leaders to create and implement solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI works with partners to drive action through its unique model. Rather than directly implementing projects, CGI facilitates action by helping members connect, collaborate, and develop Commitments to Action — new, specific, and measurable plans that address global challenges. Through CGI, the community has made more than 3,700 Commitments to Action that have made a difference in the lives of more than 435 million people in more than 180 countries.
OurCrowd: Leah Stern, Partner Global Communications / UK: +44 747-0196826 /
E: email@example.com WHO Foundation: Tia Jeewa, Head of Communications / UK: +44 7944808784/