Financial services company Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) has announced a partnership with African climate tech company Koko Networks to back a carbon financing solution.
Founded in 2019, KOKO says it is dedicated to addressing the demand for alternative energy solutions by supplying bioethanol cooking fuel to over a million homes. Bioethanol is derived from the fermentation of starch and sugars in plants, offering an eco-friendly alternative.
Koko replaces demand for charcoal through supplying over 1.1 million homes with bioethanol cooking fuel distributed through a dense network of high-tech Koko Fuel ATMs located in thousands of corner stores across urban Kenya.
The resultant carbon revenues are shared with households as a non-government energy subsidy, enabling even the poorest households to switch.
CEO of Koko Greg Murray highlights RMB's unwavering commitment to harnessing carbon as a transformative force for the citizens of Africa.
He says: “We’ve been looking for an entrepreneurial banking partner that understands Africa, climate markets and technology. We are proud to embark on this long-term partnership with RMB to help accelerate the expansion of Koko’s platform across Africa.”
According to the NIHR CLEAN-Air (Africa) Global Health Research Group, in Africa over 900 million people cook with polluting fuels like charcoal, directly driving millions of hectares of deforestation and over 600 000 deaths from household air pollution each year.
To solve this problem, a continent-wide energy transition to clean and modern fuels is required.
RMB, which acted as the as the lead arranger and financier for this initiative, says it is proud to support Koko's rapid growth and effort in providing affordable, low-emission energy to millions across Africa.
“As a pan-African investment bank, this deal fits well within our ambition to build a market leading carbon trading and finance business operating across Africa, serving both existing and new clients,” says Phil Norton, carbon finance lead at RMB