A women-led nuts processor, Exotic EPZ Ltd, has received a Sh5 million soft loan from pro-green technologies Kenya Climate Innovation Centre (KCIC).
The facility, provided by Autodesk Foundation — a private nonprofit organisation supporting innovation — will enable the firm to raise its farmer base from the current 1,500 members and make prompt payments for macadamia nut deliveries.
KCIC chief executive Edward Mungai said small enterprises running climate-friendly businesses will be targeted to enable them scale up operations as well as widen market reach.
“Our early stage financing facility is a game-changer that will support young enterprises in their quest of identifying innovative, market-based climate solutions and help them move toward greater financial growth,” explained Mr Mungai.
Mr Mungai said he was willing to partner with other pro-green investors keen on supporting small enterprises that run environmentally friendly businesses.
He said that Autodesk Foundation had pledged more funds for startups with viable business ideas that need seed capital to scale up.
“Climate change poses a real threat to Kenya’s development prospects and livelihoods as it undermines investments made to meet Kenya’s development agenda.
“The drivers of Kenya’s economy are primarily natural resource-based, notably agriculture, trade, industry, tourism as well as the services sector including water, energy, and transport,” he said.
Exotic EPZ managing director Jane Maigua welcomed the funding, saying it has provided them with working capital that will help them improve on efficiency and boost product availability to their customers.