Global pharmaceutical company Sanofi is calling for entries to the Afric@Tech start-ups challenge targeted at innovators in the medical and healthcare sectors in Africa.

The Sanofi in Africa Challenge comprises of three challenges which aim to identify, award and support startups with innovative and adaptive solutions to improve access to medicine and healthcare in Africa.

The first challenge will focus on solutions that can diagnose non-communicable diseases while the second challenge focuses on telemedicine solutions. The last challenge deals with improving the education of health professionals in the field of chronic diseases in Africa. It focuses on finding solutions so they can get access to the last clinical information (such as advanced therapies).

The selected winners will get the opportunity to join the company in a lab for three days at VivaTech 2018 in Paris. The conference, which takes place from 24 – 26 May, is expected to bring 6,000 startups together with investors, tech leaders and other companies from around the world.

In March 2018, a jury will select the African start-ups that will participate in this innovation journey.

The judges will evaluate the start-ups on five criteria: proof of positive results in at least one African country; the maturity of the project; the relevance of the solution; the potential of the market and of the business model; the competences, the expertise and the experience of the team; and scientific proof that it can be implemented.

Selected start-ups will attend the Sanofi in Africa Lab in Afric@Tech where they will present their projects in front of a jury and demonstrate their solutions in front of the audience of VivaTech.

The selected projects could also benefit from financial assistance and individual support from Sanofi, through a system of coaching and mentoring.

“For over 50 years, we have been committed to improving access to medicines and healthcare for all African communities and people. We feel it is our responsibility to accompany, develop and shine a light on these talented South African start-ups,” said Country Chair and RX GM of Sanofi South Africa, Thibault Crosnier Leconte.

Applications are free and can be completed online. Candidates can apply here until 15 February.

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