Canadian healthcare technology investor iGan Partners in collaboration with Dubai-based entrepreneur and investor Faisal Belhoul have launched a new $250 million fund that will focus on healthcare technology in the Middle East and North Africa.
The new iGan Arabia fund, will focus on investing in artificial intelligence and cloud technology driven medical devices and digital health innovations. It aims to improve patient outcomes and reduce the overall cost of health care.
The fund targets $250m through limited partnerships with an additional $250m in co-investments. The fund plans to work with local investors, healthcare groups and government agencies, Sam Ifergan, founder and chief executive of iGan Partners, said.
“We see the GCC as a rapidly transformative region, particularly in the healthcare sector … [we] have identified innovative opportunities across digital health, connected medical devices, healthcare IT and AI,” he said.
“We will invest locally and will showcase the GCC’s healthcare innovations to the world,” Mr Ifergan added.
Healthcare providers in the Gulf are expanding as the population increases and the cost of treatment grows. Improvements in the quality of health care, along with rising demand for preventive care and digital medical services, are set to drive growth in the industry.
Healthcare spending in the Gulf Cooperation Council region is projected to reach $89 billion this year from $60bn in 2013, according to the global consultancy KPMG.
Toronto-based iGan Partners has teamed up with various founders focused on commercialising and scaling technological advancements in health care. It provides portfolio companies capital, support and access to a network of industry partners and sector specific co-investors to help them grow and succeed.
The new fund, which was announced on Monday during Arab Health 2022 in Dubai, has identified four breakthrough technologies for investment. These include prostate cancer, advanced wound care, eye disease and digital patient management.
It will invest in the solutions developed by Ontario-based Exact Imaging — the developer of the world’s first micro-ultrasound for high resolution of prostate cancer; Dubai-based Okadoc — a digital patient management solution; Toronto’s eSight Corporation — manufacturer of wearable electronic vision devices; and Toronto-based MolecuLight — producer of a hand-held imaging device that enables clinicians to visualise bacteria in real-time for advanced wound care.
All these companies already have regulatory approvals and are scaling their operations globally.
“We aim to invest in start-ups and other healthcare companies, especially in the GCC, and help them evolve as the best-in-class,” said Mr Belhoul, co-chairman of iGan Arabia.
“We will support not only their operations in the region but also help scale up their operations to key markets in North America, Europe, and LatAm,” said Mr Belhoul, adding that iGan Arabia aims to create “thousands of new jobs and add value to the economy”.
Mr Belhoul is also a founder of Ithmar Capital, a private equity firm in the GCC, and founder of Amanat Holdings.