The foundation has recently added two funds to its impact investing portfolio, targeting women and children’s health and new medical technology.
The Guy’s & St Thomas’ Foundation has bolstered its portfolio of impact investments targeting health inequalities with the addition of two new funds in recent months.
Both the Women’s and Children’s Health Technology Fund and the AXA IM Global Health Fund seek to narrow health inequalities through increased access to medical products and services.
Anita Bhatia, the foundation’s investment director, said the two funds presented unique venture opportunities to deliver medical products and services and reduce health inequalities through targeted investment. “We look forward to our long-term partnership and helping to drive real health impact through these investments,” she said.
Both funds currently invest in healthcare companies active mainly in high-income countries, but with ambition to expand further into lower-income countries and thus support greater access to essential medical supplies globally, according to the foundation.
The Women’s and Children’s Health Technology Fund, launched by Canadian-based Cross Border Impact Ventures (CBIV) in 2021, seeks to reduce health inequalities by investing in technology solutions targeting the causes of poor health for women, children and adolescents. The fund, whose other backers include J&J Impact Ventures, had an initial close of £30m, with an overall target of $100m.
CBIV says it invests in companies addressing gender health inequalities and child health via opportunities that offer both high impact & high returns. Investments have included firms working on a screening and diagnostic tool for cervical cancer, a low-cost approach to treating postpartum haemorrhage, prosthetic limbs for children, and a small heart valve that can grow as a child develops.
AXA Investment Managers’ AXA IM Alts launched a $500m global health strategy in April 2022, underpinned by a $200 million commitment from AXA Group. It focuses on medical devices, biopharmaceuticals, vaccines, and diagnostics.
The Guy’s & St Thomas’ Foundation, which takes its name from two London hospitals, has been supporting measures to produce a healthier society for centuries, and is now a significant impact investor. The foundation said that, since the launch of its impact investing strategy in 2018, it had committed around £50m and aimed to commit a further £25m during 2023. It did not provide details of investment sizes for the two latest funds.
Bhatia explained to Impact Investor in an interview last year that, buoyed by recent successes, it was aiming to invest £100m by 2026 under the impact investment strategy, mainly in funds active in health and its social determinants. These include access to higher quality housing, environmental health, community infrastructure, education and employment.