Multimillion-dollar funding is secured by an African startup.

The first significant investment in recycling has gone to Kubik, an Ethiopian company.

According to AFROTECH, an Ethiopian news agency, Kubik, a tech startup, is the first business of its kind to obtain multimillion-dollar funding for a sustainability project in the nation.  

Kidus Asfaw and Penda Marre founded the firm in 2021. It has a factory at Addis Ababa’s Adama Industrial Park and specialises in turning plastic trash into low-carbon bricks, beams, and columns.  

It has now raised $1.86 million further in funding, bringing the total amount raised from its seed round to $5.2 million. With this amount, Kubik becomes the first Ethiopian business to obtain a multimillion dollar investment earmarked for climate and sustainability solutions.  

Investors in the round included King Philanthropies, which funds projects related to poverty and the environment, Endgame Capital, which invests in technologies that address climate change, and African Renaissance Partners, a top venture capital firm in East Africa.  

“Today’s fundraiser will allow us to keep up with the escalating demand we’re experiencing, scale our operations further with enhanced technology, empower more female waste collectors, and turbo-charge our pan-African growth ambitions,” said Kidus Asfaw, co-founder and CEO of Kubik.  

The inventors claim that when compared to alternatives like cement, Kubik’s building materials are 40% less expensive per square metre. They also reduce greenhouse emissions by a factor of five due to their low carbon makeup.  

According to reports from the World Health Organisation (WHO), Africa contributes only 5% of the world’s plastic production, and its consumption rate is slightly lower at 4%.  

Environmental worries are being exacerbated by the continent’s growing population and fast urbanisation, which is contributing to a spike in single-use plastic.  

According to a report by the World Bank, the estimated expenses associated with damage caused by marine plastic pollution in West Africa vary from $10,000 to $33,000 for every tonne of plastic waste.  

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