5 African ventures among 30 global startups selected for Google’s Startups Growth Academy program

The Google for Startups Growth Academy: AI for Health has unveiled its 2023 cohort, spotlighting 30 transformative startups from across Europe, Middle East, and Africa. After an intensive selection process that started in May, the lineup includes five innovative African startups, all set to reshape healthcare with AI-empowered solutions.

Startups worldwide are harnessing AI as a transformative instrument, addressing significant challenges from early disease detection to ensuring information accessibility. Their innovations not only improve billions of lives but also drive robust economic growth.

Yuval Passov, Head of Google for Startup and lead of the program, remarked: “Africa’s innovative spirit in the AI for Health domain is profoundly inspiring. These startups stand as a testament to the continent’s ability to develop global health solutions. We aim to stand alongside them, offering support and partnership as they strive to scale and disseminate their groundbreaking solutions.”

African Startups in the Cohort include (in alphabetical order):

  • Eden Care (Rwanda): Merging AI and digital health to reshape health insurance and corporate well-being.
  • iZola Limited (Kenya): Enhancing support for families with neurodivergent children via an AI-integrated therapeutics platform.
  • mDoc (Nigeria): Elevating personal health practices through virtual health mentorship.
  • Pharmarun (Nigeria): Unifying regional pharmacies with an innovative, patient-first platform.
  • Zuri Health (Kenya): Revolutionizing patient care with an all-inclusive digital toolkit.

Among the selected startups outside Africa, Biocam has introduced a capsule that scans the digestive system in real-time to identify potential threats. Mindstep offers an app focused on enhancing brain and mental health, while Rayscape provides radiologists with a digital assistant equipped with AI tools for better decision-making.

The initiative aligns with Google’s broader vision to support startups and accelerate their growth. In August, Google announced a broader program, the Google for Startups Accelerator: AI First, a 10-week equity free accelerator aimed at supporting African startups looking to use artificial intelligence to solve local challenges.

Since introducing the Google for Startups Accelerator programs in Africa in 2018, Google has supported 106 startups from 17 African countries and these startups have collectively raised over $263 million in funding and created over 2,800 jobs.

Google for Startups Growth Academy: AI for Health is a hybrid program dedicated to supporting high-potential startups using AI technology to grow and innovate responsibly in the healthcare and wellbeing industry. Over three months of workshops, mentoring, and networking events, founders develop data-driven strategies for acquiring new customers and partnerships, innovate responsibly with emerging technologies, and expand to new markets.

Key benefits of the program include:

  • Equity-free support: Three months of equity-free support, combined with access to Google products and resources.
  • Custom mentorship: Personalized technical consulting from Google mentors and AI professionals.
  • Strategic support: Focused guidance on AI, company, and product strategy.
  • Leadership training: Hands-on sessions tailored to augment management skills.
  • Go Global: Mentorship from Google teams spotlighting international opportunities to venture into new markets.
  • Networking opportunities: Opportunity to engage with VCs, industry stalwarts, peer founders, and be integrated into an expansive alumni network.


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