Pharma ordering platform Chefaa raises over $1m pre-Series A funding

Founded in May 2017, Chefaa is an Egyptian startup that allows users to order medical products and schedule deliveries. It has raised over $1m in a pre-Series A funding round. The company currently serves nine Egyptian cities, including Delta and Upper Egypt, and plan to cover all of Egypt by the end of 2020.

Chefaa received pre-seed funding from Flat6labs Cairo in 2018 and a social impact grant from the StartEgypt initiative – which totalled $304,000. In its first 12 months it fulfilled more than 93,000 orders through over 800 pharmacies, and generated total sales of more than $1m.

It currently operates in nine Egyptian cities, with plans to roll out nationwide coverage later this year. The company also plans to expand into the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region in 2020.

Chefaa’s platform is free for users. It charges pharmacies a fee per order and a subscription fee. Its GPS functionality allows users to schedule deliveries to their nearest pharmacy. The platform is particularly targeted at chronically ill patients who have repeat prescriptions. Chefaa services include 24/7 support by licensed pharmacists, dosages reminders and Arabic-speaking educational posts on Chefaa blog.

Overall, Crunchbase lists 477 start ups in Africa involved in the broad healthcare space. A key focus of activity is reinventing the supply chain to enable small community pharmacies to place orders easily, and to access pharmaceuticals more cost effectively. The biggest startup is Ghana’s mPharma, which has so far raised $55m, although there are other platforms out there including South Africa’s BusyMed.