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SunCulture, a Kenya-based startup that develops water pumps and irrigation solutions running on solar energy for smallholder farmers, has secured a round of investment from the EDF Group.

SunCulture’s solar-powered irrigation solutions are designed to make smallholder farming households more productive in their agricultural activities, by not having to rely on the rains. That means they can continue with their farming activities throughout the year. Something that goes a long way towards establishing food security for the society and financial empowerment of the farmers. SunCulture’s products are tailored in such a way that farmers get customized irrigation systems that comes with ongoing support and financing.

Now that the startup has secured funding from one of the world’s largest electric utility companies and a global leader in low-carbon energy – EDF – SunCulture is poised to increase its production of solar-powered pumps and irrigation system to more farmers across Kenya and bordering countries.

EDF joins the list of institutional investors, from whom SunCulture has received funding. Others on that list include Energy Access Ventures and Partners Group. It is also reported that EDF will take the financing further to the farmers, by putting in place financing vehicles that will help them (farmers) afford the solar irrigation solutions provided by SunCulture under a ‘pay-as-you-grow’ plan.

EDFs commitment to partnering with local companies to create lasting impact represents an important shift in the way multinationals are doing business in Africa. We’re excited about this partnership, which gives us the opportunity to work with EDF to increase rural household productivity across the continent,” said Samir Ibrahim, the CEO and co-founder of SunCulture.

The Senior Executive VP in charge of EDF’s International Division, Marianne Laigneaur, added: “We are proud to invest in a technology company that brings to African smallholder farmers genuinely innovative solutions transforming their lives and fostering economic development in African countries.

This partnership enables EDF to enter a new and very promising business line of Off-Grid offerings. Out ambition is to become SunCulture’s partner of reference in their expansion beyond Kenya, especially in countries where EDF already has a strong footprint.”

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