Ugandan startup attracts support from Google to battle cancer using AI

Uganda-based health technology firm CHIL AI Lab is among 10 startups that have been picked to participate in PitchDrive II, a project co-sponsored by Google.

CHIL is short for Community Health Care Innovation Lab. And AI stands for Artificial Intelligence.

The firm is a brainchild of Shamim Nabuuma Kaliisa.

The development follows two other notable wins by Uganda firms.

In 2018, Ketty Adoch secured a multimillion AI deal with Microsoft to run her AI-powered project and AirQO, a Makerere University project also collected funds from Google to deal with climate change.

PitchDrive II, which will be highlighted by a tour in Asia – is overseen by Google for Startups and Co-creation Hub (CcHUB), a Nigerian-based technology innovation center.

CHIL AI Lab has developed an AI-powered app that facilitates remote doctor-patience interactions.

It also created machine learning- and AI-powered self-testing kits to make diagnosis of both cervical and breast cancers easily scalable.

A survivor of breast cancer, Nabuuma competed against over 200 scientists and innovators from 20 African countries.

The win puts the company in a position to be among the beneficiaries of Google’s AI lab that was opened in Ghana in 2018.

The Pitch Drive II tour

On August 21, the startups will kick off the project with a 2-day bootcamp at CcHUB Design Lab in Rwanda.

After this bootcamp, they’ll travel to Singapore, China, South Korea and conclude the tour in Japan with a pitch event.

The event is organized in partnership with JETRO and it will happen during the Tokyo International Conference of Africa’s Development (TICAD 2019) event.

On top of the above, these startups will network with officials at top companies like Transsion Holdings, Dentsu Ventures, Google Korea, Samsung C & T, Yamaha, Kepple VC.

The tour will take 14 days.

The other 9 startups that will participate in the Asia tour were picked from Nigeria (3), Kenya (2). Morocco, Tunisia, Ivory Coast, and Rwanda sent one each.

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