Strengthening the capacity for medical diagnoses and the response to the Covid-19 crisis in Africa

Ghana Kenya Nigeria Mozambique Uganda Rwanda Tanzania Zambia Multi-country Africa
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Cerba Lancet Africa
Proparco and IFC are supporting the leading pan-African biomedical player by modernizing and developing new laboratories, primarily in the most fragile and poorest countries in Africa.
Client presentation

Cerba Lancet Africa (“Cerba”) is the leading pan-African biomedical player. It came about through a partnership between the French medical biology company Cerba Healthcare and its South African counterpart Lancet Laboratories. Cerba was set up in 2018 and carries out millions of medical tests every year in about a dozen Sub-Saharan African countries. These tests are useful at every stage in the patient pathway (diagnosis, treatment, follow-up) and are carried out by specialized teams in the countries concerned.

Project description

The operation by Proparco and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, involves a EUR 15m senior loan to Cerba Lancet Africa. Through this financing, Cerba will be able to accelerate the modernization of its medical analysis laboratories in Eswatini, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

This financing will also allow it to open new laboratories in Africa, especially in countries where diagnosis services are limited. Cerba Lancet Africa’s development project will give priority to the poorest and most fragile countries in Africa.

Project impact

The project will help develop high-quality medical laboratories in countries where health services are relatively weak. As a referral laboratory with ISO 15189 certifications, Cerba will contribute to increasing quality standards on the market and will offer a wider range of tests at local level. 
The project will also increase the number of patients and collection points. The expansion and acquisition of laboratories will make it possible to serve some 2.2 million patients by 2029, against 1.3 million patients before the project. Cerba will provide some 5.8 million medical tests every year and plans to increase to some 7.26 million tests by 2029. 
Finally, this project will support a total of some 1,900 jobs in the target countries over the next 5 years, including 230 jobs created at Cerba.

The project will thereby contribute to the achievement of SDG 3 (“Good health and well-being”) and SDG 8 (“Decent work and economic growth”).

Date of signature of the project
Ghana Kenya Nigeria Mozambique Uganda Rwanda Tanzania Zambia Multi-country Africa
Financing tool
7 500 000 Euros
Amount of funding
EUR 7.5m loan
Financing details
Cerba Lancet Africa