The Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank, FMO, has extended a $10 million funding package to climate fintech platform Nithio for its investment vehicle, FAIR: the Facility for Adaptation, Inclusion, and Resilience. The collaborative initiative aims to provide financial support to companies offering clean energy solutions to households and small enterprises in Africa, addressing the continent's vulnerability to climate shocks and enhancing energy access.
With Africa grappling with unprecedented climate challenges, the partnership between Nithio and FMO is poised to make a significant impact. The investment will enable Nithio to scale financing for solar home systems and productive-use appliances, contributing to livelihood improvement, job creation, and enhanced productivity for households and businesses. Through FAIR, Nithio has already made 11 investments, providing energy access to over 400,000 people and supporting 12,100 enterprises.
FMO's investment in FAIR aligns with its Access to Energy Fund (AEF) mandate, which focuses on supporting renewable energy access in emerging markets. The investment is expected to provide new or improved energy access to over 160,000 people, support nearly 7,000 small enterprises, and help avoid more than 500,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions.
The partnership underscores Nithio's commitment to equitable energy access, including plans for an innovative Gender-Lens Financing approach that incentivizes solar companies to prioritize women customers. Research indicates that increased energy access leads to a 23% improvement in women's job opportunities and an 11% increase in empowerment. Leveraging Nithio's AI-driven risk analytics models, FAIR aims to fill market gaps by providing sustainable financing to local distributors and large international solar companies.
Kate Steel, Co-Founder, and CEO at Nithio, expressed pride in the partnership, anticipating a positive impact on households and SMEs across Africa. The investment is poised to scale energy solutions, improve livelihoods, enhance the quality of life, and contribute to reducing carbon emissions.