Cura: Bringing Digital Health to the Arab World

By Robert Siegel
2021 | Case No. SM344 | Length 8 pgs.

A family health crisis, difficulties making urgent medical appointments, and inefficient doctor-patient communications had convinced two tech entrepreneurs that Saudi Arabia’s health care system was ripe for a digital intervention. Digital health technologies had focused primarily on health care providers, leaving patients in Saudi Arabia largely on the sidelines—was telehealth, and real-time patient communication tools, the next big digital revolution for the 33 million people in the Kingdom? And could this model expand to other Middle East countries and beyond?

This case study describes the founding of Cura in 2016 and the cofounders’ exploration of various telemedicine models and problem-solving efforts as challenges arose. The case concludes with a discussion of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the company.

Learning Objective

This case is designed to help students understand the challenges inherent in a new and unproven business model, and how to evaluate the potential risks and rewards of investing in a company that appears poised to take a start-up concept into the mainstream health care domain.
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