23 September 2021

CDC Group forms partnership with Medikabazaar to bolster healthcare in India

  • Investment to strengthen healthcare supply chain network and increase access to a wider range of medical supplies, helping to improve quality of healthcare in India
  • Amplify Medikabazaar’s Covid-19 response, enhancing its ability to supply essential COVID-related medical supplies across India
  • The investment demonstrates CDC’s healthcare sector expertise and flexible capital solution in addressing specific development challenges

CDC Group, the UK’s development finance institution (DFI) and impact investor, has provided a US$27.5 million commitment to Medikabazaar, a leading tech-driven medical platform in India. Forming part of a US $75 million fund raise in Series C, CDC’s investment will be deployed to strengthen Medikabazaar’s healthcare supply chain in India, bolstering its capacity to provide a wide catalogue of quality medical supplies, including equipment to a large number of healthcare service providers.

In India’s extremely fragmented healthcare sector, supply chain, capacity constraints, and lack of transparent pricing act as chronic stress factors for the more than 100 thousand healthcare service providers. These challenges especially impact small and medium hospitals and nursing homes, which lack access to the required catalogue and timely availability of quality healthcare supplies. Furthermore, Covid-19 has exacerbated this stress on the healthcare system, causing a supply-demand crunch during an urgent crisis.

CDC’s investment in Medikabazaar will help to streamline the medical supply chain in India, resulting in improved availability of a wide assortment of medical supplies, transparent pricing and lower search costs for small providers. In turn, such products and services would enable these providers to meet the health needs of smaller groups and communities that live beyond large cities. Currently, about 50 per cent of Medikabazaar’s sales are to smaller hospitals and nursing home, and around 60 per cent of its customers live outside metro cities.

Moreover, CDC’s commitment will enhance Medikabazaar’s ability to bridge the demand gap for critical Covid-19 medical supplies and equipment across India. The medical platform continues to play a vital role in India’s response to the pandemic, having provided access to critical medical supplies, including mask, PPE kits, and oxygen concentrators and ventilators, at a time of severe shortage. Following Medikabazaar’s recent launch of its COVID ICU packages, CDC’s investment will accelerate the company’s effort to help medical establishment rapidly augment their critical care facilities, in preparation for a third wave of Covid in India.

Alex Ellis, British High Commissioner to India, said: “As the UK’s development finance institution, CDC has a strong record of mobilising capital for social impact. This new investment into Medikabazaar in India will help improve healthcare quality and increase access to a wider range of medical supplies through its innovative platform. The UK-India partnership on health is tackling the biggest challenges of tomorrow, from genomics to antimicrobial resistance, and will help prevent future pandemics.”

Mr. Vivek Tiwari, Founder & CEO, Medikabazaar said, “We are delighted to welcome CDC Group on board as an investor. The Series C funding has also seen our existing investors extending their trust in us as we continue on our rapid growth path in transforming the state of the Health-Infra industry in India. The funds raised will enable us to expand and deepen our presence in the Indian B2B healthtech industry. Ever since the pandemic, the need for healthcare infrastructure services has grown exponentially. The last fiscal has seen a remarkable rise in our operations. With over 100,000 medical establishments, over 150,000 independent medical professionals and more than 15,000 seller partners already on-board, we are aiming for a 300% growth through FY22. The funding will also help power our global ambitions.”

Srini Nagarajan, CDC’s Head of South Asia: “Access to quality and affordable healthcare is a key component for improved development outcomes in any country, and CDC’s partnership with Medikabazaar comes at a critical juncture when collaboration is urgently needed to address India’s healthcare needs.

Beyond our investment, CDC is prepared to devote its sector expertise to support Medikabazaar in scaling its operation across the country to deliver greater variety of essential medical supplies at affordable cost to more customers. This partnership will have an expansive impact on improving people’s health and quality of life, and we are thrilled to be making an investment that will help to widen economic opportunities, uplifting communities, and ensure sustainable development in India over the long-term.”

CDC’s commitment to Medikabazaar will be contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 8.5, by improving health outcomes through improved access to medical supplies, and improving economic opportunities for the workforce in India.

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