The OIST-Lifetime Ventures Fund and the Global Health Equity Fund (GHEF) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to increase access to holistic health innovation in low and middle-income communities through partnering with Japanese startups.
The MOU formalizes the cooperation between GHEF, launched by OurCrowd in collaboration with WHO Foundation, and the OIST-Lifetime Ventures Fund, established by Lifetime Ventures in collaboration with the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) and provides a strategic framework to achieve GHEF’s objectives through knowledge exchange and market access by leveraging networks with Japanese entrepreneurs addressing global human and planetary health problems.
The GHEF is a unique financial-first impact venture capital investment fund, focusing on breakthrough technology solutions that can impact healthcare globally. It aims to fuel innovation and increase investment in the health sector, with the shared goals of delivering competitive returns to investors and ensuring equitable access to medical care. GHEF aims to impact health equity.
Geetha Tharmaratnam, WHO Foundation Chief Impact Investment Officer, said on the announcement, “The imperative of investing in innovative healthcare that is accessible globally, requires the ability for capital to operationalize innovative solutions emerging from dynamic academic institutions, like OIST. Tackling health inequity can only be successful when you find partners who share the same vision - to build a healthier future for all. The GHEF works to create the conditions for access to health innovation faster and in a more equitable way. This MOU is a mark of the commitment of the GHEF to identify and scale high impact healthcare startups which will allow for collaboration with Japanese startups early in their journey for the benefit of health outcomes in low and middle-income communities.”
Dr Morris Laster, GHEF General Partner said, "We are thrilled to join forces with the OIST-Lifetime Ventures Fund, reinforcing our commitment to fostering global health equity and sustainable progress. By pooling resources, we are able to tap into Japan's flourishing innovation landscape, a critical sourcing hub for groundbreaking healthtech startups. We aim to propel these pioneering technologies and services to global prominence, particularly benefiting low and middle-income countries. This partnership is more than an investment alliance; it is a testament to our common vision for a healthier, fairer world. Our collaboration will serve as a powerful conduit for change, a vehicle for innovative solutions that champion accessibility and equality in healthcare. Together, we believe we can make a transformative difference, shaping the future of global health."
“Lifetime Ventures is thrilled to partner with OurCrowd and the WHO Foundation to help our healthtech portfolio startups to expand their distribution network to where their product is most needed. Through this collaboration, we aim to address global health challenges and promote equitable access to healthcare, including and especially with the commercialization of OIST research outcome,” said Ryosuke Kimura, General Partner of Lifetime Ventures. Lifetime Ventures is a pre-seed/seed-focused venture capital firm based in Yokohama and Okinawa, Japan investing in exceptional entrepreneurs addressing global human and planetary health problems.
Gil Granot-Mayer, Executive Vice-President, OIST Innovation, commented that “OIST is delighted by the OIST-Lifetime Ventures Fund developing global networks with prominent players worldwide to increase funding opportunities. The initiative is aligned with OIST’s ambition to foster innovation from Okinawa to Japan and the world.” OIST was founded in 2011 by the Government of Japan to contribute to science and technology worldwide, attract leading researchers from Japan and abroad to conduct high-quality research, advance the development of a world-class research hub, and nucleate a knowledge cluster that will catalyze technology transfer and industrial innovation in Okinawa, Japan.
OurCrowd is a leading global venture investing platform for accredited investors with extensive investment experience in technology companies and the formation and management of investment funds. In collaboration with the WHO Foundation, OurCrowd has established the Fund, a financial-first impact investment fund focusing on breakthrough and accessible solutions that enable global health for all and which seeks to invest in companies that are related to medical care and mitigation of health risks through technologies such as AgTech, FoodTech, and energy transition.
The WHO Foundation was created as an independent Swiss foundation affiliated with but independent of WHO to marshal new resources from philanthropists, foundations, businesses, and individuals to support its mission: promote health, keep the world safe, and serve the vulnerable.
For more information contact
Lifetime Ventures: email@example.com
OurCrowd: Leah Stern, Partner, Global Communications