Kenyan e-health startup wins Merck Accelerator Nairobi bootcamp


Respiratory illness diagnostic tool Tambua Intelligent Diagnostics has been named winner of the Merck Accelerator Nairobi Satellite Programme, receiving a US$3,000 cash prize and a trip to Merck’s Germany-based Innovation Centre.

The Merck Accelerator Nairobi Satellite Programme, hosted in partnership with Mettā Nairobi, saw 10 startups take part in a four-day coaching and mentoring bootcamp in May.

The bootcamp provided an opportunity for startups innovating in healthcare, life science and performance materials sectors to quickly explore and validate the potential for co-creating and collaborating with Merck.

The programme culminated in a Demo Day, at which Kenya’s Tambua Intelligent Diagnostics emerged as the winner – taking home the US$3,000 cash prize, an expenses-paid trip to the Merck Innovation Centre in Darmstadt, Germany for a chance to pitch for a collaboration project with Merck; and one year full membership at entrepreneurs club Mettā Nairobi.

Tambua has developed a cross platform mobile application for diagnosing tuberculosis (TB) and pneumonia, using sound waves, deep analytics, and an expert system to record a cough and profile whether a person has symptoms of these respiratory diseases.

The other startups which participated in the bootcamp included seven other Kenyan companies: ConnectMed, UjuziKilimo, SoilCares Africa, Lily.Health, Micrive Infinite, Majik Water, and Healthix Solutions Kenya. Tanzania’s Noobites, and Uganda’s Kaaro Health completed the cohort.


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Inspired and excited by the African tech entrepreneurial scene, Gabriella spends her time travelling around the continent to report on the most innovative tech startups, the most active investors, and the latest trends emerging in the ecosystem.

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