You might be thinking given the headline of the article, that you are reading another article based on the stale Covid narrative.
Sure it can’t be denied Covid had a major impact on the healthcare industry but at the same time the healthcare industry has been continuously evolving in South and South East Asia over the last few years thanks to all the ingenious startups emerging out of the region.
Covid just helped accelerate a healthtech revolution that was already underway.
So, let’s take a birds eye view of the healthtech industry in South and Southeast Asia and startups we think are leaders in the field.
The healthcare industry in South and Southeast Asia faces several challenges ranging from inefficient supply chains to ineligible doctor prescriptions. According to some reports, total healthcare expenses are expected to surpass US$ 4 trillion by 2024. The size of the home healthcare in APAC was estimated to be US$43.25 billion in 2020 and is expected to be US$78.14 billion in 2025 which translates into a CAGR of 12.56%.
The sheer size of the opportunity seems to have been amplified further by the pandemic. While the world came to a standstill, the healthcare industry was working overtime. We identified startups that were innovating pre-Covid and have continued on their ingenious path even today. These startups have the ability to positively impact people’s lives today and even tomorrow while giving investors upside potential to make impressive returns on their investments.
One such company is AmarLab out of Bangladesh. One of the most densely populated countries with a population of over 160 million people, Bangladesh offers lucrative opportunities for healtech companies. AmarLab provides end to end diagnostic test services from sample collection to testing to report delivery directly to and from customers location of choice like a home or office. It ensures customers get the full benefit of an efficient, friendly and reliable service without requiring them to make time-consuming visits to diagnostic centers, ultimately saving time, money and hassle. AmarLab’s product delivers a an effective solution to daily problems:
Building on the Bangladesh narrative is also, Doctorkoi. All of us at some point or the other have had a difficult time reading a doctor's prescription. While we have marvelled at the pharmacists ability to correctly read the prescription, there always exists a possibility of an error which can be fatal. Doctorkoi helps solve this problem. It is a prescription writing software that allows a doctor to write a prescription with just a few clicks. The software has a database of 27,000 medications with dosage and patient history via charting and automation features. Doctorkoi also offers a digital platform for doctors to consult their patients online which came in handy once people were stuck at home during lockdowns. The online platforms served as a safe and reliable way for patients to interact with doctors. A snapshot of Doctorkoi’s traction tol date:
New healthtech startups are also emerging in markets like Singapore like AskDr which has shown the robustness of the platform model in Singapore. AskDr is a consumer facing platform that aims to make reliable health information more accessible to the public from verified doctors and sources. The platform features a knowledge bank that provides free, credible information for patients, increases visibility for doctors and integrates an ecosystem connecting healthcare to patients, doctors and other providers. Patients can get personalised recommendations, research existing content and access reliable healthcare information. Visiting a doctor in Singapore can expensive, and AskDr looks to make it affordable by providing reliable information online. Just like Doctorkoi, AskDr has seen solid traction:
Our final healtech startup in our portfolio is Medlink. Medlink is the first B2B commerce platform for pharmaceutical products in Vietnam.. Medlink disrupts the traditional distribution process of pharmaceutical products by cutting down unnecessary distribution costs. Their platform connects pharmacies directly with pharmaceutical companies which bypasses the middleman to help cut down half of the salesforce and save at least 70 percent on distribution costs. One of the biggest contributors to doctor and hospital bills are pharmaceutical products. By helping in reducing the costs of pharmaceutical products, Medlink in turn is helping the common man by reducing his or her healthcare bills. Just like other startups in our portfolio, over the last few years Medlink has reported strong growth:
We at Accelerating Asia look to invest in companies that deliver solutions to active problems that plague our society. Such companies not only help improve the lives of people but have the potential to generate strong top and bottom line numbers which in turn justify the risks the investors take on such startups.
If you’re interested in connecting with our healthtech startups, investing alongside us, meeting our portfolio companies, or just generally interested in talking to us about startup investing, please reach out and tell us a little bit about yourself.
Accelerating Asia invests in startups with scalable technology solutions and revenue generating business models that combine purpose with profit.
In making an investment decision, investors must rely on their own examination of startups and the terms of the investment including the merits and risks involved. Prospective investors should not construe this content as legal, tax, investment, financial or accounting advice.