In 2020, the global digital health market size exceeded $142 billion and is estimated to grow even further at over 17% annually until 2027, reported Zawya. It was further reported that the remote healthcare market in the Middle East and North Africa is projected to reach $2 billion by 2024. Additionally, approximately 400 million people in the Arab world lack basic health services, including access to medical information and advice. On top of all this, chronic conditions have been an ever-increasing burden on the affordability of healthcare across the globe.
According to a GCC Healthcare Industry Report by Alpen Capital, the healthcare sector in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of around 7% during the tenure of 2019-2024. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Vision for 2030 aims to drive the digital transformation of health systems and inspire new collaborations between the public and private sectors for improved clinical and financial outcomes. This resultantly means increased support and a richer market for the newly emerging health-tech startups, and Altibbi is one such startup.
What is Altibbi?
The UAE – based, Altibbi, is an end-to-end digital health platform that provides telehealth consultations, drug delivery services, and booking as well as data management software solutions for doctors. It is the largest telemedicine platform in the Arab World, as well as the first one to be recognized as an official telehealth provider in Egypt, Jordan, and the UAE. Altibbi is revolutionizing healthcare in the MENA region by providing quality healthcare with ease of access and increased affordability.
The platform provides 24-7 access to local primary care doctors, allowing patients to connect directly with doctors via audio calls and chats. Presently, the app serves users in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Omar, Jordan, Iraq, and Palestine.
Additionally, the company also has a free doctor Q&A platform where 12,000 doctors answer a combined 1,000 questions a day. Both of these features are offered online and through the company’s mobile application.
Background of Founders
Jalil completed his Masters in Industrial Engineering at the University of Bologna, Italy. After that, he completed his MBA at the Thunderbird School of Global Management.
Then in 2010, he joined Altibbi as a Managing Partner.
Ayman completed his undergrad in Mechanical Engineering at Tufts University. After this, he completed his MBA at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and later an MPA at the Harvard Kennedy School.
He started his career as an Economic Analyst at the Royal Hashemite Court but later moved to Hikma Pharmaceuticals as their External Consultant. Over the course of the next few years, he served at a number of different national and international firms until finally in 2016, he co-founded Altibbi with his colleague.
The company has been able to achieve a market-leading position with capital efficiency and rigor against some of its major competitors.
Given the fact that there are approximately 400 million people in the Arab World lacking access to essential medical services, Altibbi works diligently to circulate medical content in the Arabic Language via the Internet. By providing medical information from trusted sources and remote medical consultation services for all Arabic speakers, Altibbi helps patients access medical information and advice, thus reducing the number of unnecessary doctor visits and lessening the pressure on the healthcare system.
The Company hosts over two million pages of content and has published six peer-reviewed scientific papers in the last year alone. It has conducted 4.5 million telehealth consultations to date, has 20 million unique visitors a month to its platform, and offers its 24/7 telehealth services across seven regional countries – with over 1,500 active certified doctors on the platform.
The company has also partnered with Uber in the past, both to offer Uber users a free trial of the company’s telehealth service and to make that service available as a perk for drivers.
Altibbi won the World Summit Award for Best Digital Health Content and the Schwab Award for Best Social Institution.
Series B Round: Raised $50.5 million
In October 2017, the startup raised a series B round from investors, Dash Ventures and Middle East Venue Partners(MEVP).
Then in March 2022, the startup announced yet again another series B round of, $44 million, which so far has been the largest single financing round for a regional Digital Health company.
The round brings together a number of strategic and financial investors and was led by Foundation Holdings, Hikma Ventures, as well as existing investors, Global Ventures, and DASH Ventures. Raising more than US$50 million in funds since its founding in 2011, Altibbi’s diverse shareholder base also includes high-profile investors Endeavor Catalyst, Middle East Venture Partners, and Al Rashed, among others.
Seed Round: Raised $2 million
In September 2015, the company raised a seed round of $2 million from Dash Ventures and Middle East Venue Partners(MEVP).
The company plans to utilize the funds to invest in its technology as well as make inroads into the e-pharmacy and diagnostics collection segments.
The new funds will be used to expand the platform’s offering into online pharmacy and diagnostics collection, to establish the region’s first end-to-end fully integrated primary care offering, providing high quality, affordable, accessible value-based healthcare in accordance with Saudi Vision 2030 and Egypt’s Ministry of Health and Population.
Since digital healthcare innovations play a key role in supporting Saudi Vision 2030, the company also plans to increase its investments in machine learning to further support doctors in providing more precise diagnostics, referrals, and prescriptions.