Solar Cooling Startup Koolboks Raises $2.5 Million

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The France-based and Africa-focused sustainable cooling company, Koolboks has raised $2.5 million in the seed round. It aims to scale solar refrigeration across geographies, where erratic and inconsistent power supply inhibits the growth of businesses by adding the cost of diesel-fueled generators.

In 2018, when Koolboks started off, it targeted European campers with an outdoor camping refrigerator. Within two years, the company pivoted to a new market: business owners in off-grid locations in emerging markets of Africa, like Nigeria.

The co-founder and CEO of the four-year-old Koolboks, Ayoola Dominic told TechCrunch in an interview, “Koolboks wanted to change the way the world experiences cooling. We had initially started with the camping world in Europe. Despite some success, it didn’t take us too long to figure out that our technology could be more impactful with the people that need it the most.” He further added, “These people find it difficult to feed their families because 40% of their food gets spoilt even before getting to the market. Some labour day and night to put their savings together to buy food stocks only for them to throw it away the next day due to lack of refrigeration.”

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Adesuwa Okunbo Rhodes, the founder of Aruwa Capital Management, said, “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.” Aruwa Capital Management is a female-led growth equity fund based in Lagos, Nigeria. Rhodes further added, “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.”


 

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