Investment in climate-tech start-up will accelerate the transition from deforestation-based charcoal cooking fuel in emerging markets.
KOKO Networks (“KOKO”) today announced that the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund has concluded an equity investment in conjunction with a group of venture capital and family office investors.
KOKO operates a proprietary climate-tech platform for the low-cost delivery of bioethanol cooking fuel, to replace dirty cooking fuels such as deforestation-based charcoal which dominates the $47 billion market for African cooking fuel. The platform has been proven at scale in Kenya, with over 415,000 household subscribers joining since commercial launch in late 2019, including over 500% growth in the last 12 months.
KOKO was honoured as the world’s leading emerging market climate technology solution by the Financial Times & International Finance Corporation’s Transformational Business Awards 2021.
Greg Murray, CEO of KOKO, commented: “Charcoal is wiping out Africa’s forests. Switching urban households to sustainable cooking fuel is one of the few levers for actually stopping deforestation, rather than just talking about it. We are building a new industry, and mission-aligned capital is a key building block. Microsoft is walking the talk, in both their climate-tech and carbon removal investments. We are proud to have them join our platform.”
Mark Kroese, General Manager, Sustainability Solutions, at Microsoft commented: “The Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund is committed to investing in technologies and solutions that conserve natural resources and promote climate equity. KOKO’s solution is replacing demand for deforestation-based commodities with sustainable alternatives, and we are excited to support KOKO as they expand access to low-cost, clean cooking solutions in Africa.”
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