Koolboks, a sustainable cooling company providing accessible cold storage solutions to African businesses has raised the sum of $2.5 million in seed funding. The funding round which saw the participation of Acumen, Blue Earth Capital, All On, GSMA, and others, was led by Aruwa Capital Management. Following this round, the total amount of funding raised by Koolboks is now $3.5 million.
The newly-acquired funding will be used to scale its expansion across Nigeria, as well as building its team to support its growing B2C business and the construction of a local assembly facility in Nigeria. The funding follows just after the startup opened an affiliate office in July of this year.
Koolbolks was founded back in 2018 in France. But what exactly does the startup do? The startup leverages the abundant supply of the sun and water in Africa to create a solution that is able to generate refrigeration or up to four days in the absence of electricity and power. The startup makes it affordable to access continuous refrigeration with its pay-as-you-go technology which harnesses natural resources. Individuals and small businesses can access this technology by paying as low as $10 per month to own an off-grid solar refrigerator.
Its Koolboks unit works as an all-in-one solution for individuals and businesses by providing a refrigerator, freezer, and lighting. Two LED lighting bulbs and USB charging ports are provided for users. This makes it very useful for individuals and businesses, especially for people living in areas where power is a luxury. The startup’s solution is even timelier considering the rising fuel costs and the Nigerian situation.
“Poor energy access, high costs of buying and running generators, and the relatively high cost of cooling prevent many African businesses and households from accessing refrigeration when it’s most critically needed. We believe that people can make their livelihoods and feed their families by relying on energy from natural resources – energy from the sun, wind, and water that are abundant around us. It’s a win for the people, a win for us, a win for our investors, and a win for the planet. We are excited to work with some of the world’s leading impact investors as we focus on empowering many more users across more countries in Africa and globally. Importantly for us, we are also appreciative to partner with local impact investors such as Aruwa Capital Management, who understand the demand and market dynamics, having operated across the continent for many years; their experience and network will be invaluable to us as we scale,” Koolboks CEO Ayoola Dominic said commenting on the opportunity to empower small businesses by providing access to cold storage solutions.
“We have been impressed with Koolboks’s innovative solution which goes far beyond food waste reduction – the team’s laser focus on ensuring clean renewable energy in off-grid areas is crucial to the survival of many small businesses and sectors as well as fostering economic gender equality. Equitable access to clean and reliable energy is key to closing the gender economic gap across rural areas and we are excited to see Koolboks’ expansion continue to make economic equity a reality for millions more women across Africa,” Adesuwa Okunbo Rhodes, Founder at Aruwa Capital Management said.