Category: Product or innovation

Solar crusader lights up Africa

Built in Africa focuses on entrepreneurs, startups and technologies that are affecting the continent and empowering the African people. When you look at the supposed “dark” continent, its social and economic problems are abundantly clear. But it seems that Africa’s entrepreneurs are stepping up and trying to find ways to solve some of these challenges. […]

Health tech innovations changing South Africa

In the last few years tech companies have jumped on the wearable tech bandwagon with popular gadgets like the Fitbit or Samsung’s Gear Fit. There are also hundreds of fitness apps taking the smartphone world by storm. The importance of health technologies is becoming more prevalent as everyone, from athletes to housewives, have realised the […]

Ten innovative social entrepreneurs in Africa

The African Innovation Foundation (AIF) recently announced the finalists of the prestigious Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) 2014. Like the years before, the 10 finalists have been chosen for their practical, innovative solutions to local problems that are unique to the African continent. From South…

M-KOPA Solar hits 60,000 users in Kenya

Established in 2011 to end the dependency on kerosene lamps and fuel in Kenya, M-KOPA Solar, an innovative asset financing company that sells solar home systems to off grid households, on an affordable 12-month mobile money payment plan via Safaricom’s M-Pesa, has announced that it has hit over 60 000 users countrywide. The firm said […]

Social entrepreneurs flourish in Africa

  As perhaps the first-ever conference of social entrepreneurs in Africa, the Sankalp East Africa conference in Nairobi in February did not disappoint. The conference, organized by Intellecap, a leading Indian company in social enterprise, featured twelve entrepreneurs from Africa…

Investments with low margin and high social return

  Photo credit: Utente Elitre Impact capital plays different roles in different scenarios, depending on whether it’s directed to early-stage, high-risk investments, more mature companies, or organizations that will likely need ongoing concessional support. In the first two scenarios, capital from impact…

Microsoft 4Afrika picks five startups

Things are going to be very interesting for African startups this year and Microsoft 4Afrika wants to be right in front for it. Today the initiative announced a new innovation grant for five African startups designed to invest in notable startups that will help further Africa’s global presence. According to the press statement, in addition […]

Announcing a New Investment: KZ Noir

Acumen has made a $1.2M convertible debt investment in KZ Noir, a Rwanda based speciality coffee producer and subsidiary of Kaizen Venture Partners.  This represents Acumen’s initial investment in Rwanda and first in the coffee sector, a key contributor to the Rwandan economy and an important source of employment. Globally, there are over 2.25 billion cups […]

The post Announcing a New Investment: KZ Noir appeared first on Acumen.

Sharing the knowledge to improve rice yields in Ghana

As a Global Fellow, Junko Tashiro traveled to Ghana to launch Copa Connect, a social venture aimed at integrating smallholder rice farmers into the value chain. Through Eric’s story, Tashiro illustrates the power of courage, conviction, and effort. One morning, I rose for an early appointment to visit Eric, a smallholder farmer harvesting his first […]

The post Courage and Conviction: Eric’s Story appeared first on Acumen.