Out of Africa: How COP27 drove fundraising for climate firms tied to the region

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In today’s issue:

— Fundraising data show rising interest in African solutions firms as COP27 approached in Egypt
— President Biden’s new climate bill is starting to irritate foreign trading partners
— Climate catastrophes caused more than $115 billion in insured losses this year, far above 10-year average

— Californians, take heart. Here are three places where a gallon of gas is much higher.

The world’s climate finance eyes were on Egypt last month as global leaders met at the COP27 conference, and companies in Africa, or those focused on customers in Africa, made the most of it. A spate of Africa stories hit the climate fundraising market in the weeks leading up to and just after the conference, according to online fundraising researcher KingsCrowd.

One company, Amped Innovation, which makes solar and battery-powered systems that can cheaply connect to appliances and run them for the more than half of Africans estimated to not be on the grid, has raised almost $120,000 through crowdsourcing exchange Republic and is actively raising more, according to Lea Bouhelier-Gautreau, who wrote the company’s October Impact Startup report.

In total, 15 companies raised more than $29 million online from August to September, according to KingsCrowd, which showed continued resiliency in the face of shaky financial markets.

The Africa opportunity is and has always been enormous. Witness how the mobile phone economy grew there years before it did in Western countries, largely because of necessity. Climate solutions should be no different. While Egypt took a lot of criticism — rightly so — for hosting COP27 because of its repressive regime, anything that directs attention to emerging markets like in Africa can’t be all bad.

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