A US$1.2 million innovation fund which seeks to support entrepreneurs in Africa using renewable energy has been launched by the Africa Enterprise Challenge (AECF).
The innovation fund is meant to unlock the potential of renewable energy and to create new business opportunities.
This will build on AECF’s Renewable Energy and Adaptation to Climate Technologies (REACT) initiative, which was launched to support the private sector develop and expand its clean energy technologies to Africa’s rural communities.
AECF Chief Executive Officer, Victoria Sabula, said the Innovation Fund was key to enhancing large scale transformation within local communities.
“Investing in affordable and accessible renewable energy solutions can create jobs, grow economies, and build more sustainable livelihoods.
“Through the fund, we hope to unearth new ways that renewable technology – be it domestic, communal, or commercial – can be used to generate income and create jobs,” she said in a statement.
Ms Sabula said solutions that reduce the negative impacts associated with the use of traditional cooking options at the household and institutional levels, build climate change resilience among communities and support productive uses such as water pumping and agro-processing. “In applying, businesses and entrepreneurs will need to demonstrate how their proposed innovations will transform livelihoods of low-income households through creation of jobs and diversification of livelihoods,” she said