Entrepreneurs across Africa are coming up with innovative solutions to everyday problems, which often also create jobs and solve social challenges. Yet many of these solutions never reach the market. Consider EcoZoom East Africa, a social enterprise producing solar-powered lamps and portable, clean-burning cooking stoves. More than 80% of households in sub-Saharan Africa use wood, charcoal or animal waste as fuel for cooking, which produce gases that are harmful to the household and damaging to the environment. Families, often women, spend up to 20 hours per week collecting the firewood and charcoal needed for cooking, limiting the amount of time they can spend on income-generating activities. Fetching firewood in remote areas also means they are more exposed to gender-based violence. EcoZoom’s stoves offer solutions to these challenges: 60% less smoke than traditional cooking systems and 70% lower fuel requirements, providing health benefits, environmental gains and increased oppor...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now