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The Ethiopia Climate Innovation Center (ECIC), a center that supports Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) working on innovative solutions tackling climate change challenges, awarded 7 entrepreneurs who were considered to have a feasible business that can be modeled in the context of climate technology development as well as use and transfer of that technology.
The center gave out grants varying from USD 25,000 to USD 37,000 to the entrepreneurs through its Proof of Concept (POC) grants. It was stated that the grant will be used to assist product development, prototyping, testing and piloting of a product or service to allow the entrepreneur to prove that the business model is feasible in a technical and commercial ways.
The winners of the grant were announced at the first Annual Ethiopia Climate Innovation Center Finance program held on Tuesday, December 16.
The grant winners had innovative business ideas focused on agribusiness, water and sanitation as well as renewable energy. These innovative business ideas are expected to demonstrate positive impact on the environment as well as communities.
Besides awarding the entrepreneurs, the event also held discussions regarding different issues such as exploring funding opportunities that can be mobilized for tech-startups in Ethiopia including equity fund and other alternative ways of obtaining finance. The event was also aimed at providing an update on the Proof of Concept (POC) program.
Through financing, the Ethiopia Climate Innovation Center (ECIC) established in March this year, is said to provide a regionally driven approach to solving climate, energy and resource challenges and support economic development through job creation.
The ECIC is expected to deliver funding to up to 40 climate technology entrepreneurs and equity investments to over 20 companies, generating up to 2,800 direct and indirect jobs after 5 years and over 12,000 long-term jobs.
The center recently established a database of climate technology products, to increase entrepreneurial opportunity and awareness of technologies in the climate sector.
The database aims to support entrepreneurs in obtaining information on climate technology products which may assist in developing their product and will facilitate networking and cooperation among entrepreneurs with similar technological objectives.
It will also link producers and consumers by making non-proprietary information on new products available through searching the ECIC website and facilitate consumer’s knowledge and awareness of specific technology products and of the market in general.
This database is intended to serve both producers and consumers.