No doubt, raising a new financing round is a big success for any social enterprise. But what exactly happened after the round? Was it easier to close a follow-on financing? Could hybrid finance play a supporting role? To investigate how innovative forms of finance can help a social enterprise grow and thrive, we have asked some of our clients about their major achievements since our collaboration. What were their most important updates on business models, products, investors and strategies? And how have the impact projections materialized? Enjoy our new Social Enterprise Success Stories series, which continues with a pioneer for basic healthcare to isolated communities: HEALTHY ENTREPRENEURS
Photo: ©Healthy Entrepreneurs / This series is supported by the Kompetenzzentrum für Soziale Innovationen Deutschland, co-financed by the European Union.
Healthy Entrepreneurs: Providing basic healthcare where no one else will go
The social problem:
▪In large parts of the world, people living in rural communities often lack trusted information on health-promoting practices and cannot access affordable health products and services.
▪Poor knowledge of causes and symptoms lead to avoidable infectious diseases such as Zika, Mers, and Ebola, and to low adherence to treatment of chronic diseases such as hypertension and diabetes.
▪There is a low availability of health centers and high travel costs to get to the nearest ones.
▪The high dependency on the local black market for medicines causes the use of cheaper but counterfeit medicines (30-60% of all available medication).
▪Healthy Entrepreneurs offers a franchise model for basic health services: The social enterprise identifies qualified health workers (“Community Health Entrepreneurs”, CHE), enables them to become micro-entrepreneurs, gives training, start-up credit, and equipment, while managing the full supply chain.
▪Among other benefits, the solution has proven to double the CHE’s income and lead to 55% in cost savings in health expenditure for rural families. It contributes to essential employment in rural and remote areas, especially for female entrepreneurs.
Proof of Concept:
▪Healthy Entrepreneurs is working today with more than 18,000 micro-entrepreneurs in 7 countries, reaching around 18 million people in rural areas across Africa.
▪To scale operations in Kenia and Uganda, the social enterprise was looking for growth capital in 2019/2020 and successfully secured a hybrid financing round with support from FASE in 2020. A follow-on financing round (again hybrid) was closed in 2022.