Rwandan-owned Akagera Medicines says it has secured over Rwf16.5 billion (€12 million), a round that is expected to allow for capacity-building, among other allocations. The development was announced on Saturday, February 4, by Michael Fairbanks, who is also the current Chairman of the Board of Akagera Medicines. The Rwanda Social Security Board (RSSB) is a majority share owner in the institution. ALSO READ: Akagera Medicines secures $1.5m to improve access Fairbanks was speaking to over 6,000 Rwandans and friends of Rwanda who had gathered in Washington DC for the eleventh edition of Rwanda Day. He disclosed the development during a panel discussion “Taking care of our Health”, where he urged science and medicine enthusiasts to fly back to Rwanda and work with Akagera Medicines. ALSO READ: Rwanda unveils BioNTech’s first vaccine manufacturing plant in Africa “I am going to make a job offer now, to every young Rwandan with a science Ph.D. and medical degree and interested in business development in the science sector to come back to Rwanda because we just raised 12 million euros that we need to spend in Rwanda on capacity development,” he said, before attracting a huge applause from the crowded hall. Fairbanks did not disclose who led the round, but this is not the first time Akagera Medicine has secured huge financial muscles from investors. Just recently the firm announced that it was partnering with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) for approximately $1.46 million to, among others, improve vaccine delivery and accessibility in Africa. According to Fairbanks, the firm has also previously raised funds from the European Investment Bank and the European Union as well as the Gates Foundation. “And we are going to announce a new round of $40 million investment in us from one of the greatest academic consortiums in the world.” In a related development, Fairbanks announced that the firm is expected to start human trials in April. “We have five vaccines and two drugs, and we are entering human trials in April,” he asserted. The New Times understands that the institution could, potentially, use the recently inaugurated BioNTech vaccine manufacturing facility for their work of producing mRNA vaccines, with preliminary discussions underway. The development is part of a series of steps that the country is taking towards positioning as a health hub on the continent by building an ecosystem that seeks to address healthcare concerns. Major developments include the launch of the BioNTech vaccine manufacturing plant, the African Pharmaceutical Technology Foundation, and the African Medicine Agency, among others.