Category: Social impact

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…

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…

In India, latrines are lifesavers

Chandramani Jani in front of a public awareness mural about toilets and sanitation by her home in Chakarliguda.  Credit Vivekananda Nemana The mural on the wall outside of Chandramani Jani’s home is more message than art. It depicts a sari-clad woman…

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…

$1.6b in impact investing in India

Sectors like microfinance institutions, financial inclusion and healthcare together received 82% of the investment. Photo: Mint Mumbai. Impact investing firms, which invest to deliver social benefits alongside financial returns, have put $1.6 billion (around Rs.9,600 crore) into India since 2000,…

Vestergaard’s water mission

I am in Kenya this week following the activities of Vestergaard, a rather remarkable mission-driven company that first came to my attention when they invited me to Africa — at their expense — to tour their operation. They operate at the…

Who cares about impact investing

……Unlike socially responsible investing’s focus on screening out certain types of companies such polluters, impact investing proactively backs a project or firm engaged in an effort important to the investor. An investment could include a bond offering for an alternative…