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New Energy World magazine logo
New Energy World magazine logo
ISSN 2753-7757 (Online)

The rise and rise of Africa’s clean tech ecosystem and investors


8 min read

Rows of solar panels on solar farm in Africa, with residential buildings in background Photo: Adobe Stock
Solar hybrid power plant in Somalia, Africa

Photo: Adobe Stock

What are the likely investment mechanisms by which the ‘sleeping giant’ continent of Africa is to realise its very significant clean tech potential? Rolake Akinkugbe-Filani, Chief Commercial Officer at Mixta Africa, an infrastructure developer, and a Member of the Advisory Board at Persistent, a climate and renewable energy venture-builder and early-stage investor, takes a detailed look at how finance and technology are coming together.

Africa’s clean technology (clean tech) space is yet to produce any ‘unicorns’ (privately held startup companies valued at over $1bn) like its financial technology (fintech) counterparts, but investor excitement is palpable. In 2022 alone, clean-tech ventures in Africa raised $863mn in equity, pipped to the post only by fintech, and representing 18% of total funds raised across all technology sectors on the continent.


Global clean tech, climate tech and renewable energy entrepreneurs have been amongst the biggest beneficiaries of the global shift in capital allocation within the energy sector. Between the second half of 2020 and the first half of 2021, a total of $88bn was invested in climate tech, with the first half of 2021 posting a record $60bn, according to PwC. This was more than three times the investment in the same period in 2020 as more and more non-traditional investors scan the sector for opportunities.


US climate tech firms received the lion’s share of funding, followed by Europe and China. Africa is not left behind, however, as clean tech finance is becoming increasingly important as the continent strives to meet its energy needs in a sustainable manner. What is often less known is the flow of capital into sustainable energy investments in Africa.


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