What a $25,000 first check does for Africa’s female founders

Ifeoluwa Dare-Johnson believes early medical testing could have saved her father, who died suddenly in 2019. His passing was a great shock for the Nigerian entrepreneur, because while he had blood pressure issues, he never looked in need of critical care.

The tragedy inspired her to start a company that takes requests for lab tests online, and delivers results to customers’ homes within three days, empowering people to be proactive about their medical care. Dare-Johnson relied on her savings, and her sense of purpose, to launch Healthtracka in May.

She quickly realized external funding would be necessary for the company to scale. But who would fund a female founder in Nigeria, running a startup for the first time, in a sector that wasn’t fintech? As is the case globally, only a handful of venture-backed startups in Africa are founded by women. One investor told Dare-Johnson to come back in six months, when the startup acquired users. She was “too early,” she recalls being told.

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Originally published on Quartz : Original article

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