The US-based development organization, the International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) recently approved a $25 million investment into a new venture capital fund by Pan-African venture capital firm Novastar Ventures. The new fund, named the Africa People + Planet Fund, is a mission-oriented potential vehicle that will finance tech-driven founders, entrepreneurs, and companies that are building sustainable, planet-positive, mass-market business models across the continent of Africa.
Novastar caters to investors, entrepreneurs, and founders in Africa, currently managing two other funds in the region with a goal of raising over $200 million in their third fund. The fund caters to tech-enabled firms in the areas of agriculture, education, and off-grid renewable energy with companies such as TradeDepot, MoKo, and iProcure in their portfolio.
The Africa People + Planet Fund will back projects in the segments of climate techs, cleantechs, marketplaces, and initiatives that support community resilience through financial and supply chain services. It is looking to take up venture capital opportunities for deploying regenerative forestry, agriculture, and aquaculture, biofuels, and biochar, which can help protect biodiversity and capture carbon while generating more opportunities for smallholder farming.
Novastar Ventures was founded in 2017 by four Nigerian entrepreneurs: Tayo Oviosu, Bolaji Finnih, Ini Ebong, and Andrew Carruther. The founders brought together a team of experienced investors with a strong focus on financing the African Continent’s underserved markets. As a result of its success, Novastar has invested in more than 50 early-stage, technology-driven companies and investments in 10 countries across the continent.
The DFC, a White House initiative from 2017, is part of the US government’s international development and finance tool. It seeks to achieve development, security, and prosperity around the world by providing financing and political risk insurance to foreign investments. Through the partnership with Novastar Ventures, the DFC is looking to support impact and profitability in the African market.
With the increased focus on sustainable investments, the Africa People + Planet Fund is a great opportunity to be part of the fight against world challenges, such as climate change, global poverty and inadequate infrastructure. With the US government’s financial support, Novastar Ventures expects to achieve a larger scale of projects that can potentially bring positive impacts to the continent of Africa.