2023 South Asia Health Tech 100

HolonIQ’s annual list of the 100 most promising Health Tech startups from South Asia

Health Intelligence Unit

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December 7, 2023

The South Asia Health Tech 100 is HolonIQ’s annual list of the most promising startups from across digital health, biotech, medtech and other areas where entrepreneurs are driving healthcare innovation. 

South Asia's massive healthcare market faces significant challenges. Despite being a net contributor to the global healthcare workforce, the region struggles to retain talent due to lower salaries and the pull of overseas health systems. Low healthcare spending further hinders service quality and access. Yet, this challenging environment fosters innovation and offers great potential for scale players, with the 2023 South Asia Health Tech 100 showcasing fast-growing, innovative startups.

Exhibit 1

Download the Market Map. Companies are categorized by their main area of focus following the Global Healthcare Landscape

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Virtual first models have stuttered in 2023 but continue to offer significant opportunity in South Asia.

The 2023 South Asia Health Tech 100 is mapped to the HolonIQ Global Healthcare Landscape, an open-source taxonomy for the future of health and wellness. HolonIQ’s system of classification provides a granular breakdown of startup activity across the South Asia region and allows us to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the health ecosystem. By viewing the 2023 South Asia Health Tech 100 cohort against the taxonomy’s ‘clusters’ we are able to visually represent where both capital and innovation is currently focused. The region has been bit by the global slowdown in health funding but there are a number of South Asian health startups that have raised significant sums in the past year, including: Sugar.fit (diabetes reversal program); Onsurity (health benefits platform); THB Technology (health data analytics); Tricog Health Services (virtual cardiac diagnostics) and HealthPlix (clinical decision support).

Exhibit 2

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Access to quality services remains a challenge across the region and this is driving concentration of Treatment and Prevention startups.

South Asia’s startups are predominantly treatment and prevention based, aiming at servicing patients rather than discovering new therapies and conducting drug discovery research, which accounted for just 4% of startups. Treatment and Prevention based startups account for over 40% of the South Asia health tech cohort.    

Exhibit 3

Direct to consumer business models account for nearly 60% of South Asia’s 2023 Cohort.

The 2021, 2022, and 2023 cohorts consistently show that South Asia is dominated by Health Tech startups focused on addressing healthcare needs directly. However, startups with D2C business models have decreased slightly, from 64% in 2022 to 59% in 2023. 

Exhibit 4

South Asia’s 2023 cohort mainly consists of older startups.

The age shift in the cohort is noticeable in 2023, where companies aged less than 6 years have declined to 56%, down from 68% recorded in 2022. Startups launched since the pandemic make up a considerably lower percentage of the Health Tech 50, consisting of 20% in 2023, a decrease from 32% in 2022. Meanwhile, the number of ventures aged more than 10 years in the cohort have seen a sizable increase. Nevertheless there are also an exciting number of companies formed in the last three years - post-Covid - who have been able to gain real traction in the South Asian market, including: Allo Health (sexual wellness platform); HealthySure (employee benefits platform); ClaimBuddy (health insurance); Nova Benefits (health benefits technology) and Heaps Health (health data analytics).

Exhibit 5

Track the Cohort

HolonIQ customers can track the most promising Health Tech startups from South Asia on the HolonIQ Market Intelligence Platform. Look for the 2023 South Asia Health Tech 100 list in the Lists tab. Request a Demo if you are not a customer and would like to learn more.

Exhibit 6
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