FMO, BIX Capital supports clean cooking in Africa with US$10m investment in CQC

AFRICA – C-Quest Capital (CQC), a successful social impact project developer providing transformational carbon projects including clean cooking, has received US$10m financing facility from the Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank FMO and BIX Capital.

The joint financing is aimed to further strengthen CQC’s clean cooking activities in Sub-Saharan Africa.

As a result, a total of 7 million households will receive CQC’s double cookstoves by 2026, reaching 28 million people in over 15 SSA countries including Zambia, Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania and Angola.

Furthermore, this investment will deliver substantial Climate Impact: the total GHG avoided until 2026 will accumulate to 140 million tCO2e.

According to the latest IEA data, more than 2.6 billion people lack access to clean cooking , relying instead on firewood, kerosene or coal as their primary cooking fuel.

The lack of access to clean cooking remains very acute in sub-Saharan Africa where the number of people without access is increasing as population growth outpaces provision efforts.

Almost 490,000 annual premature deaths are related to household air pollution from the lack of access to clean cooking solutions, with women and children the worst affected.

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Forest degradation and deforestation is another serious consequence of the unsustainable harvesting of fuelwood.

BIX Capital, an Investment Vehicle based in the Netherlands, which is a partnership of  FOUNT, Cardano Development and the Shell Foundation has previously provided loans to C-Quest Capital (CQC).

BIX brought FMO to the table to realize the first co-investment opportunity between the two parties and is in line with FMO’s Energy strategy.

FMO has been a cornerstone investor in BIX Capital since 2018 and has supported in BIX’s Carbon Receivables Finance proposition. 

The Dutch financier has provided funding the funding through the Access to Energy Fund (‘AEF’), a fund FMO manages on behalf of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The investment comes days after Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO, signed a partnership with Charm Impact, an impact investment platform based in London, UK.

The aim of the partnership is to facilitate the financing of clean cooking solutions in sub-Saharan Africa.

The alliance between RVO and Charm Impact is expected to reduce deforestation by supporting alternatives to charcoal and wood for cooking, which are widely used in cities and villages in sub-Saharan Africa.

Among the companies accelerating the expansion of their clean cooking solutions in sub-Saharan Africa include Kenya based Koko Networks offering bioethanol-fuelled stoves.

The East African company has just signed a partnership with the Rwandan authorities to set up a national network of bioethanol cooking fuel vending machines, with an investment of US$25 million.

This was followed by Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund concluding an equity investment in conjunction with a group of venture capital and family office investors in the company.

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