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Orbit Innovation Hub graduates 10 digital startups from a four-month business development program run by Orbit Innovation Hub in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation under its Young Africa Works in Ethiopia initiative.

Orbit Innovation Hub (OIH), a startup hub that incubates and accelerates digital innovations with an emphasis on health care, is partnering with the Mastercard Foundation to incubate 15 startups through its pilot program. OIH leverages a global network of experienced professionals, investors, partners, and industry leaders to support the creation of a strong and well-connected technology ecosystem in Ethiopia where innovators in the region can obtain the appropriate financial and logistics support and guidance.

The second cohort that graduated today include:

  • Blue Health – a digital emergency care providing company
  • TechMed – a home care company designed for in-person and digital-based service provision
  • Lelije – a virtual platform for maternal and children health care information
  • Medstore.et – a digital marketplace for medical equipment
  • Adey Rooms – an online room booking company
  • Veredna – a digital real estate marketplace for small and medium-sized enterprises and homeowners
  • Way – a technology company that provides map and root planning services to businesses
  • Shemach – a last-mile delivery platform for small retailers
  • Mn ale Addis – an event booking and data analytics company for organizers and attendees
  • BizOne – an ERP solution vendor for small and medium-sized enterprises

The first cohort, comprised of five startups, including Medket, Tena, Gebeta, Temaribet, and New Era Research and Development (NERD), graduated in July 2021.

We were able to get a significant amount of insight from our first cohort and our agility has enabled us to refine our approach and support 10 promising startups to commence their journeys and achieve their dreams,” said Girum Habtewold, COO of Orbit Health.

These startups joined Orbit Innovation Hub in various stages and were able to utilize the many services the hub offered, which included expert consultancy in business development, networking and linkage opportunities through the Hub’s community development activities, and access to finance in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works in Ethiopia initiative. Throughout the program, participants were trained in various areas of business development, including Finance, Market Research, Marketing, Investment and Fundraising, Legal, and Administration.

TechMed was founded by four female physicians in December 2020 as a technology-based home-to- home medical care service that has different levels of health professionals who use digital applications and short SMS numbers. The application is designed for customers and service providers accordingly with a safe and secured registration system for both clients and health professionals.

This is the greatest opportunity we have ever been given. The partnership between Orbit Innovation Hub and the Mastercard Foundation has empowered us and provided us with a safe space to innovate. This is especially valuable in the health sector where continuous innovation is necessary. We believe that the incubation program has enabled us to shape our startup so we are able to fill a need in the community during the pandemic ,” explained Dr. Essete Yohannes, TechMed CEO.

Following this graduation, these startups will deploy the insight they have received at Orbit Innovation Hub to complete their concepts and subsequently enter the market or scale-up within a few weeks with the continued support of the Hub.

The need for innovation that drives access to quality health care has never been so clear – or urgent. These startups are on the front lines meeting that need, and in the process are enabling productivity and creating work opportunities for young people. We look forward to seeing them scale their reach and impact by applying what they have learned over the last few months,” said Samuel Yalew Adela, Country Head, Ethiopia, at the Mastercard Foundation.

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