Category: Africa

Africa produces green start-ups

The Green Pioneer Accelerator focused on early stage enterprises contributing innovative solutions to environmental issues such as climate change, energy insecurity, loss of biodiversity and degradation of ecosystems. Over the past four months Impact Amplifier, GrowthAfrica, VC4Africa and Hivos offered…

Smallholder farmers helped in Kenya

In this guest post, Nat Robinson, Chief Executive Officer of Juhudi Kilimo highlights three innovative Kenyan start-ups, from solar pumps to credit companies that are helping to change the lives of  rural farmers for the better.   Joseph Omwega is…

Powering Africa

There is a direct correlation between economic growth and electricity supply. If sub-Saharan Africa is to fulfill its promise, it needs power—and lots of it. February 2015 | byAntonio Castellano, Adam Kendall, Mikhail Nikomarov, and Tarryn Swemmer Sub-Saharan Africa is…

Acumen invests in access to finance

Acumen announces its new investment in First Access, a data analytics company improving access to formal financial services for low-income East African communities. In East Africa, only 22 percent of the population has access to formal financial services with the…

Esoko investment connects farmers to markets

Acumen and the Lundin Foundation today announced a $1.5 million aggregate equity and debt investment in Esoko Networks Limited (“Esoko”), a Ghanaian-built technology platform that connects African farmers to markets via mobile phones. The platform allows various stakeholders, from agri-business,…

Water and guns for good

The Motley Fool recently had an opportunity to chat with social entrepreneur Peter Thum. Thum is the founder of Ethos Water, which was sold to Starbucks in 2005. He also co-founded Fonderie 47, an organization that takes assault rifles from…

Social impact fund to raise $400m

  MUMBAI: Aavishkar, the country’s biggest social entrepreneurship-focused venture capital fund, is set to raise $400 million (Rs 2,500 crore) in 2015. This would be the biggest amount raised by any fund focusing on the social sector or impact investing in the…

Saving forests and creating jobs

Sanga Moses stands in the Kasokoso squatter’s neighborhood in Uganda, one of the areas where he has set up his enterprise selling eco-friendly fuel. PHOTOGRAPH BY JON LOWENSTEIN/NOOR VIA REDUX A member of National Geographic’s newest class of Emerging Explorers, and…

Growth of internet applications

Over the last week we’ve been lucky enough to uncover some fantasic infographics that help make sense of the data emerging about the growth of mobile money across SSA, the increase in internet connectivity, and the rise in ownership of smartphones. As we see…

Companies doing Unreasonable good

As a most unusual meet-up of investors and entrepreneurs, it could have been called “Doing Good Meets Business Discipline” or maybe “Non-profit Goes For-Profit.” With uncharacteristic understatement, the event sponsor, Unreasonable Institute, of Boulder, CO, chose to call it merely…

Investment in Ugandan solar company

Acumen is pleased to announce a $1.4 million investment in SolarNow, a company that sells and finances solar home systems in Uganda. We sat down with Shuaib Siddiqui, Acumen’s Portfolio Director to learn more about the deal and why he’s…