Hyderabad: Hyderabad-based Cancer Clinics, a unit of Cipher Oncology, closed pre-Series A funding of $1.5 million (about Rs 11 crore) led by Axilor Ventures. M- Venture Partners (MVP), a Singapore-based early-stage fund, also participated marking its debut in India.
Other investors who participated include Natco Pharma, Hyderabad-based pharma and infrastructure entrepreneurs, leaders of Bharti group, senior partners from McKinsey, and ISB alumni.
Cancer Clinics aims to improve access to and affordability of holistic oncology and completely reimagine how cancer is managed. The company launched its first two centres in Hyderabad in February 2020 and is now planning to add four more centres in the next few months and expand outside Hyderabad.
A substantial oncology practice is being scaled and Cancer Clinics expects to close Series A funding in the second half of 2021.
The company said, despite the disruption caused by the pandemic, it was able to establish product-market fit, attract an accomplished panel of oncologists and is getting encouraging traction from patients.
Within its first year of operation, Cancer Clinics has been able to implement evidence-based care pathways and demonstrate improved clinical outcomes while reducing the financial burden on patients.
Prachi Sinha, Healthcare Lead from Axilor said, “Currently, even the meagre infrastructure for cancer treatment is largely urban and grossly inadequate- India is estimated to have 0.2 comprehensive centres per million versus 4.4 per million as per global standards. We are confident of Cancer Clinics’ model of offering comprehensive cancer care to the patient while eliminating the need to be restricted to any physical location, making it accessible at scale.”
Mayank Parekh, founder & CEO, MVP said, “Healthcare provision will continue to require offline channels. Real growth will therefore require a deeper integration of online and offline formats. This is why for MVP’s first investment in India, we have chosen Cipher Oncology (Cancer Clinics), a startup that has adopted the digital-first, asset light health-care delivery model in the treatment of cancer.”
Cancer Clinics has been founded by Sonali Srungaram and Sasi Sunkara. The duo has started Cancer Clinics on the back of experimentation Sonali did to uncover and address gaps in the health systems addressing the non-communicable disease burden.
Sonali Srungaram added, “Cancer care in emerging economies is ripe for disruption. There is an increasing demand for patient-centric solutions customised for individual needs. With its unique digital, distributed and asset-light model, Cancer Clinics is set to be a part of that solution.”