April 15, 2024

SunCulture Raises $12M To Support African Farmers With Solar Water Pumps

SunCulture, a Kenya-based company focused on climate technology, recently raised $12 million to expand its solar-powered irrigation systems across sub-Saharan Africa. 

The funding is part of a larger $27.5 million Series B round.

Revolutionizing Agriculture with Solar Power

In many countries around the world, climate change and erratic weather have made it increasingly dificult for farmers to maintain consistent crop yields.

SunCulture’s solar-powered irrigation systems aim to help farmers efficiently use water and boost their crop yields, even with unpredictable rainfall.

These systems are sustainable and cost-effective alternatives to traditional, environmentally harmful diesel pumps.

They are particularly designed for small-scale farmers, who make up the vast majority of the region’s agricultural workforce, and can deliver up to 1,200 litres of water per hour. 

SunCulture’s “Pay-As-You-Grow” model and subsidies from carbon credit sales significantly reduce costs, making the systems more affordable for these farmers.

Samir Ibrahim
SunCulture CEO Samir Ibrahim

While based in Kenya, SunCulture also has a presence in Uganda and the Ivory Coast, and distribution agreements exist in Ethiopia, Zambia, and Togo. 

SunCulture’s Series B Round

InfraCo Africa and Savant Group Ltd led the $12 million investment round and also saw contributions from notable investors such as Acumen Funds, Netflix co-founder Reed Hastings, and Eric Schmidt through his foundation. 

This capital injection is part of SunCulture’s $27.5 million Series B round – a blend of equity, debt, grants, and carbon financing – that brings its total investment to $65 million to date.

The funds are designated for enhancing Internet-of-Things (IoT)- enabled solar irrigation solutions, pushing SunCulture closer to its goal of raising $219 million, which is needed to deploy 274,000 systems throughout Kenya.

“We are excited to collaborate with our investors as we work towards our shared goals,” said Samir Ibrahim, SunCulture CEO.

SunCulture also plans to expand offer other farming services like soil tests and insurance.

Sara Keenan

Tech Reporter at POCIT. Following her master's degree in journalism, Sara cultivated a deep passion for writing and driving positive change for Black and Brown individuals across all areas of life. This passion expanded to include the experiences of Black and Brown people in tech thanks to her internship experience as an editorial assistant at a tech startup.