A few years ago Eva Yazhari, General Partner at Beyond Capital Ventures (BCV) witnessed how a close relative passed away during childbirth in Tanzania. The experience stuck with her and in 2021, backed by an 11-year track record in investing, she announced the closing of BCV’s Fund I. BCV’s mission is to bring change to East Africa and India, where 1 billion consumers are lacking access to need-to-haves in healthcare, agriculture and finance.
Only months after its launch Beyond Capital Ventures has now announced its first investment in a women’s health company and led Kasha’s Series A2 Bridge funding round with a $300K investment.
Kasha was founded in 2016 by Joanna Bichsel and was inspired by the founders’s own motherhood journey and the lack of access to costly women’s health and wellness products across Africa and other emerging markets: “The truth is, you often hear that women are very influential in economies and society. But when you look at how we build solutions, women are massively underserved. I want Kasha to make sure that no woman ever has a difficult time in getting the self-care products she needs to live her best life.”
Kasha currently has operations in Rwanda and Kenya, with over 8 million products delivered to date. The company aims to become a global leader in the provision of products and information surrounding women’s health and personal wellness in Africa and, as Bichsel states, to “disrupt global health forever.”
The lack of access to and unaffordability of women’s health and wellness products that are persistent causes of poor health outcomes for women in Africa coupled with the social stigma surrounding personal care, have made it difficult if not impossible for many to obtain the goods and services critical to their health and wellness.
Kasha has built a recognized, trusted brand in East Africa. The company empowers its mostly female customer base and network of sales agents by selling health and pharmaceutical products to smaller retailers, and then leveraging those B2B relationships to reach additional customers at the last mile. Kasha’s mass market consumer-facing platform can also disseminate information around women’s health and wellness.
Amongst its peers, Kasha uniquely offers online and offline services across all income levels. In some parts of Kenya, Kasha’s robust delivery ecosystem has made it the only rural delivery provider of any kind.
Commenting on their investment in Kasha, Beyond Capital Ventures General Partner Eva Yazhari shares: “We are excited to strengthen our partnership with Kasha. Joanna and her team are deeply passionate about revolutionizing women’s access to healthcare. The team’s passion and commitment has allowed Kasha to navigate the pandemic and enter 2022 stronger than ever. I look forward to supporting Kasha and seeing what this next phase of growth has in store for them.”