Sanofi South Africa Challenge

How to optimise patient treatment adherence and completion rate?

Challenge is closed



Sanofi is a global integrated healthcare leader, focused on patients’ needs.
As an innovative and forward looking startup, this opportunity could help you build your network by giving you access to AfricArena attendees (top executives, decision-makers, senior executives), get coached and mentored by Sanofi’s leadership team and also get support for your project. Sanofi will study the application and this challenges could lead to a brand-new collaboration with our company.


Expected solution:

Leverage technology to design a solution, multi-device and multi-channel, for patients in South Africa that allows them to:

  • Optimise treatment

  • Incentivise completion

  • Track weekly adherence and monthly collection of medicines

  • Trigger for identification of non-adherence along with interventions to overcome non adherence

  • Feedback analysis which will cover initiation phase, weekly adherence and monthly or bi-monthly pack collection


We are looking for affordable and easy to use solution from South African start-ups with at least a proof of concept with positive results in at least one province.



Be in the Sanofi AfricArena (4 tickets/ startup for 2 days at AfricArena)

Start-up reward in a lab

  • Pitch in front of a jury composed of Sanofi top executives and key external stakeholders

  • A corner to demonstrate your solution to the attendees

  • Opportunity to attend a pitch preparation workshop the day before AfricArena


Start-up collaboration reward

  • Start a conversation with one of Sanofi business unit in order to assess feasibility of future collaboration in South Africa (e.g. potential pilot, potential investment...)

  • Coaching / Mentoring & potential acceleration, with involvement of Sanofi South Africa Leadership team

  • Opportunity for financial help and an access to Sanofi internal expertise to support your business and your international growth strategy


Study case: The Burden of TB Disease

TB is a leading cause of death in SA with high estimates of mortality where this is compounded by comorbid HIV infection. Untreated TB infection has implications for the patient’s household and close personal contacts. This becomes more severe in vulnerable populations such as children, pregnant women and various other states of immune compromise such as patients living with HIV. The WHO ‘End TB’ strategy aims to reduce the number of TB related deaths by 95% by 2035, reduce the TB incidence rate by 90% in 2035 and have 0% TB-affected families facing catastrophic costs due to TB. One of the global priority indicators and targets for monitoring the implementation of the End TB strategy is to implement Preventive Treatment Coverage where ≥ 90% of the number of people living with HIV and children who are contacts of cases who were started on preventive treatment for latent TB infection, of those who are eligible. This will drive the 2035 targets as aimed by the WHO, where South Africa is seen as a high priority region in this strategy.

Latent TB Infection

Defined by the World Health Organisation as a state of persistent immune response to stimulation by mycobacterium tuberculosis i.e. there is no evidence of active or symptomatic disease but nonetheless the patient has ‘dormant’ disease with the potential to become overt and active tuberculous disease. The treatment of latent TB infection has gained increased interest by the WHO and is a critical component of the WHO End TB strategy. Current treatment strategies efficacy ranges from 60 to 90% (WHO). The WHO has updated its treatment guidelines in line with this strategy and is based on the very premise that the condition will progress to active TB disease in specific risk groups, in addition to other contributing factors (WHO).

The AURUM institute which leads much of the clinical evidence for LTBI treatment advocates 4 months
of treatment to anticipate missed dose coverage during the essential 3 months. Ideally, complete adherence to the treatment regimen for 3 months would be the gold standard as indicated by current clinical evidence as there is no clear guide or recourse regarding missed doses. Therefore, digital adherence aids become a critical tool to drive treatment adherence and completion. This would
entail a reminder service to the patient with a feedback loop to confirm medication administration with provision for escalation to a linked healthcare provider to follow up with the specific patient in the event of a missed dose. A robust digital platform can ensure the success of a global clinical strategy as this will ensure high adherence and completion rates.

Recognizing that the TB epidemic cannot be fought alone, Sanofi has been partnering with the National Department of Health increasing early diagnosis of TB, detect resistance, address treatment barriers and improve patient adherence.

Adherence to treatment is both a national and provincial priority. Retention in care and adherence to medications underpins a successful treatment program.

About Sanofi

SANOFI IS A GLOBAL INTEGRATED HEALTHCARE LEADER FOCUSED ON PATIENTS’ NEEDS Engaged in the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of innovative therapeutic solutions. Sanofi has core strengths in healthcare, with 7 growth platforms: diabetes solutions, human vaccines, innovative drugs, consumer healthcare, emerging markets, animal health and the new Genzyme. The company differentiates itself as an innovative and progressive organisation with an experienced workforce that is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in order to maintain the company’s position as a leading multinational pharmaceutical company.  



*For the winner*

Start-up reward in a lab

Start-up collaboration reward



*For the three selected startups*

Pitching workshops

Pitch in the Arena at the event 

Privileged contact with investors & VCs


*For the three selected startups*

FREE VIP entrance to the event

FREE flight ticket to Cape Town 

FREE accommodation in Cape Town

Selection Criteria


For this challenge we will consider only:

Startups from operating in Africa


Only startups can participate in this challenge, meaning:

Innovative solution or service

Less than 5 years of existence

Early-stage // Seed-stage company


Required format:

Short video with 2 topics: Startup presentation / How do you solve the problem? (mpg, mpeg, mp4, mov) MAX 50 Megabyte – You can also share us a “Wetransfer” link or a Youtube video

Deck pitch: 8 slides max (ppt, pdf) - MAX 50 Megabytes

Last day of submission: 26 October 2018 – 12 midnight