EchoVC, a Pan-African early-stage VC firm has launched a $2.5 million fund to invest in cleantech startups across the continent. The fund, tagged EchoVC Eco Pilot Fund I, is co-funded by Shell Foundation and UK Aid.
According to Eghosa Omoigui, Managing Partner, EchoVC, “The objective of our eco pilot fund will be to back founders with first institutional checks and assist them in syndicating financing rounds to support their mission.”
“As a pilot fund, we want to sponsor a pipeline of high-quality founders that create high-quality companies that can be supported later by the increasing number of climate and energy-focused funds. We anticipate that our learnings from this vehicle will feed into our investments to be made from our larger 2024 Eco Fund,” he added.
As the discourse on climate change intensifies, there has been a notable uptick in investments flowing into the cleantech sector throughout the year. According to BD Funding Tracker, it stood out as one of the most funded sectors during the half of the year.
Taiwo Kamson, Principal at EchoVC, said “Our Eco Pilot Fund I is not just any fund but a strategic first-step initiative designed to address the funding gap in specific impact-focused sectors and the respective value chains. We believe that by focusing on these areas, we can make a lasting impact on the growth and development of innovative solutions around agriculture, climate, and energy.”
“Africa’s golden age of entrepreneurship, job creation and household lift will demand that mission-driven founders be backed by high-risk capital. Africa’s needs, while diverse, will not be solved only by investments in fintech,” Omoigui added.
The launch of the cleantech-focused fund is a few days ahead of the annual United Nations climate change summit, known as the Conference of the Parties or COP28, which is starting tomorrow in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. The last summit was held in Egypt.
As leaders from around the world assemble in Dubai, the dialogues will delve into diverse issues, prominently featuring discussions on climate financing. A key emphasis will be on exploring avenues to assist developing nations in their endeavours to tackle the challenges of climate change.