Drishti Eye Care Pvt Ltd, a social enterprise providing eye care to underserved populations, has raised an undisclosed amount in Series A funding from Lok Capital, a venture capital firm focused on bottom-of-the-pyramid (BoP) market.
This is the first investment by Lok Capital in the healthcare segment.
The funds raised will be utilised to serve the underserved people of Karnataka using outreach programmes for villages, telemedicine supported vision centres at small towns for primary eye care and advanced eye treatment facilities and surgical care.
“Right now, quality eye care is an imperative in smaller towns and villages, where several people lose sight owing to inadequate treatment. We need to address this across all strata of the socio economic pyramid, but the poor need more attention in terms of access, cost and other critical considerations like loss of livelihood,” said Kiran Anandampillai, founder of Drishti.
Drishti Eye Care was founded in December 2011 by Anandampillai, a founding member of OnMobile. The firm offers a full range of eye care services covering primary (involves a comprehensive screening for refractive errors, cataract, retinal issues, glaucoma, etc) and secondary eye care.
“When it comes to BoP, healthcare is an area which needs immediate intervention, not only in providing affordable treatment, but in providing access to quality facilities. Drishti combines geographic access for such underserved population along with low cost options to the poor. Drishti’s operating model ensures that there is minimum dependency on asset creation (such as setting up clinics) or manning them with trained opthalmologists, while taking eye care to thousands of people in smaller towns and villages,” said Vishal Mehta, co-founder, Lok Advisory Services.
Started in 2006, Gurgaon-based Lok Capital invests between $0.5 million to $3 million in its portfolio companies. With a corpus of $85 million, Lok Capital has so far invested in around 15 companies including Ujjivan Financial Services Ltd, Vistaar Financial Services Pvt Ltd, Hippocampus Learning Centres Pvt Ltd, Suryoday Micro Finance Ltd and Satin Creditcare Network Ltd.
(Edited by Prem Udayabhanu)