LeapFrog invests in Pyramid Group - Largest Distributor of Cardiac and Orthopaedic Equipment in East Africa

26 Sep 2018

Latest investment follows on from LeapFrog’s recent investments in Ascent Meditech, a leading Indian medical products company, and Goodlife Pharmacy, now the largest pharmacy brand in East Africa

  • Pyramid Group is a market-leading distributor of specialist quality medical equipment and pharmaceutical products, and the largest distributor of cardiac and orthopaedic equipment in East Africa
  • Investment will enable business and operational improvements, including the origination of new customers, improvements to current systems and processes, and expansion of product lines, services and distribution
  • The African pharma and medical devices market is set to reach $58 billion by 2022[1], representing a substantial opportunity
  • This builds on LeapFrog’s decade of experience investing in healthcare and health insurance for emerging consumers, including a recent investment in Ascent Meditech the leading Indian medical products company, and Goodlife Pharmacy, which has grown to become the largest pharmacy brand in East Africa since LeapFrog’s investment two years ago

 London, [26] September 2018: LeapFrog Investments (“LeapFrog”), the leading investor in companies that deliver healthcare and financial services for emerging consumers has invested in Pyramid Group (“Pyramid”). Pyramid Group is a leading distributor of specialist medical equipment and products that deliver the latest standard of care, access and affordability to Africans.

Founded in 2001 by Abraham Okore, the company has grown to be the largest specialty distributor for cardiac and orthopaedic equipment in East Africa, offering a comprehensive range of quality medical products from top-tier brands including Medtronic Plc and Johnson & Johnson, opening-up access to specialised products like pacemakers and hip replacements for consumers in Africa who historically have had to travel abroad to access specialist products and treatments. This has contributed to the c.$1bn a year lost by Africa on medical tourism abroad[2].

Pyramid’s products are distributed in countries across sub-Saharan Africa, including Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Nigeria and Ghana. The company currently provides healthcare products to four million consumers, of which over two million are emerging. Sales are projected to increase to approximately eight million total consumers over the next four years, of which over five million will be emerging.

“We are delighted to have LeapFrog’s support to help us take Pyramid Group to the next level in the service of even more Africans,” said Abraham Okore, CEO and Founder of Pyramid Group. “LeapFrog emerged as the strongest, and most logical investment partner for Pyramid, given its deep healthcare expertise and strong pan-African network, which will help us meet our ambitious growth plans in the pharma and devices market.”

Africa currently has the highest age-standardised mortality rate of non-communicable diseases (779 per 100K people, versus US and EUR at 450-550 per 100K people)[3]. Poor access to medical resources and over-burdened healthcare systems, as well as an increasing prevalence of noncommunicable diseases such as cancer and diabetes are driving a need for access to affordable new medicines and more advanced diagnostic equipment. According to recent research, the African pharmaceutical market is set to reach $62 billion by 2024, while the African medical devices market is set to reach $7bn by 2023, meaning that Pyramid is well positioned to deliver strong commercial and impact returns.

LeapFrog will leverage its deep expertise in healthcare and networks within the African market to support Pyramid’s growth ambitions. This will include the identification, targeting and origination of new customers utilising LeapFrog’s unique in-house consumer insights capabilities, navigation of the complex regulatory environment found in many of the countries in which Pyramid operates, and the optimisation of internal systems and processes.

“The Pyramid team have built a remarkable pan-African business, set for growth, which benefits Africans who have a growing need for quality health products and diagnostics,” said Felix Olale, LeapFrog Partner, and Global Health Co-Lead, who originated the transaction. “We see immense potential to optimise the company’s operations and increase its customer reach in underserved areas, introducing new product lines like renal and oncology and continuing to deepen its distribution across Africa.”

The investment in Pyramid builds on LeapFrog’s successful track record in the African healthcare market and its decade of experience in partnering with emerging market businesses to provide health insurance to emerging consumers. LeapFrog invested in GoodLife Pharmacy in November 2016. It is now the largest pharmacy brand in East Africa. LeapFrog has successfully built and sold healthcare orientated businesses in the region, including global mobile health insurance provider BIMA sold to Allianz X, and West African life and health insurance provider Express Life sold to Prudential PLC.

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About LeapFrog Investments

 LeapFrog Investments invests in exceptional businesses in Asia and Africa, providing the capital and expertise for leaps of growth. Founded in 2007, the group’s portfolio of companies now reaches 140 million people with financial services and healthcare, across 149 countries. LeapFrog companies have grown on average by 40 per cent per year since investment, and the group’s private equity funds are backed by many of the world’s leading institutional investors. In 2017, LeapFrog was named by Fortune as one of the top five Companies to Change the World, alongside Apple and Novartis, becoming the first private investment group ever listed. For more information, visit www.leapfroginvest.com

About Pyramid Group

Pyramid Group was founded in 2001 with the goal of becoming the preferred partner in the provision of healthcare solutions in Africa. It invests in the best systems and people to ensure that quality products are delivered, and superior service is offered. In 2013 Pyramid Group attained ISO 9001:2008 certification, whose standards represent an international consensus on good quality management practices, and in the same year expanded its footprint from Tanzania to Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Kenya, Ethiopia and Mozambique. Pyramid Group currently represents internationally renowned companies in medical & laboratory equipment, reagents and medical supplies.

 For further information, please contact:

 Greenbrook Communications on behalf of LeapFrog Investments           

James Madsen / Gina Bell / Ed Jenkins

+442079522000

leapfrog@greenbrookpr.com

 

Notes:

  • Founded in 2001, Pyramid Group is majority owned by its founders and management team, who will remain at the company.
  • LeapFrog, which has managed over $1 billion of commitments since its inception in 2007, brings a proven 10-year track record as a trusted manager for institutional capital in emerging markets. LeapFrog Investments invests $10-50 million for majority or influential minority stakes in growing companies that have exceptional management teams and are focused on providing services that address the needs of emerging consumers.

 

[1] McKinsey report on Africa: A Continent of Opportunity for Pharma and Patients (link); June 2015

[2] World Bank (link)– 2015

[3] Pfizer report on the Global Burden of Noncommunicable Diseases; September 2011

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