This winter, I was fortunate enough to travel to my home country of Kenya to see what happens to some of the money that Praxis Mutual Funds commits to community development investing. As Stewardship Investing Impact and Analysis Manager for Praxis Mutual Funds, I was especially excited to see firsthand how our investments impact the lives of everyday people.
The second stop on my tour of community development investment sites in Kenya included a visit to the BioLite offices in Nairobi.
BioLite’s mission is to help end energy poverty by creating clean-fuel-powered cookstoves that decrease fuel consumption and reduce toxic fume emissions by 70%. These stoves also provide safe and reliable ways to cook food, charge electronic devices, and generate light for economically disadvantaged families in Kenya.
With a focus on B2B partnerships, Biolite has grown rapidly and now has a 25% market share in sub-Saharan Africa in over 20 countries. Meeting with Ethan Kay, managing director of emerging markets at BioLite energy, I was impressed to learn about BioLite’s participation in the new market for carbon credits.
BioLite has been certified by the United Nations to sell carbon credits and is using the income earned to reduce the price of the stove for consumers. Since the price of the cookstoves has dropped, BioLite’s impact doubled due to the growing popularity of the stoves and the new-found accessibility for people with low incomes.
Just like this first impact site that I visited, BioLite is also supported by Calvert Impact Capital’s Off-Grid Energy Access Fund. This fund supports the growth of energy access companies across Africa and develop their capacity to sustainably access capital at scale.
Looking to learn more about Praxis Mutual Funds’ commitment to real impact? Download our ImpactX flyer (PDF) to learn about our seven distinct impact strategies that show how investments can support and contribute to the change we want to see in the world.
Read more about real impact in Kenya
- Day one of real impact in Kenya: Stella sets the scene for firsthand community development investment stories.
- Day two of real impact in Kenya: A tour of solar powered farms.
- Day four of real impact in Kenya: Motorbikes and the thread of impact.
- Day five of real impact in Kenya: Providing economic opportunity to rural communities.