Achieving universal adoption of clean cookstoves and fuels requires a sufficient supply of the products that customers value, at prices they can afford. This means supporting innovation, ensuring sufficient capital to finance the development, operation and growth of clean cooking businesses, as well as including women in the value-chain to strengthen the supply-side.
Innovations are needed across the value chain – from product design to technology improvement to consumer finance. However, few funders take risks on unproven innovations, and investors do not often fund research and development without a ready-made market for the innovation. Grant investments are needed to develop better technologies and business models appropriate to the local context, and improve the fragmented value chains in many markets. Innovation grants can be instrumental in moving the sector forward by supporting proof of concept for potentially game changing ideas and sharing lessons learned from both successful and failed innovations. The Alliance’s Pilot Innovation Fund (PIF) provides grants of up to $150K to finance innovative approaches designed to strengthen supply of clean cookstoves and fuels. In return for seed capital to finance and pilot these innovations, recipients are required to document lessons learned and share their results to advance awareness of scalable solutions in the sector.
Finance at Scale
Creating a thriving global market for clean cookstoves and fuels will require significant capital from a range of players in the financial sector at each stage of the cookstove supply value chain – research and development, manufacturing, marketing, distribution, and financing. The types of support needed range from early stage grant funding for start-up costs, to subsidized capital, angel equity investment, and ultimately commercial capital.
In order to drive investment into the sector the Alliance is working to prepare the market for scale, support the development of commercially viable and scalable enterprise, and raise awareness in the investor community on the opportunities within the sector.
For more details please download the Alliance’s Strategy to Drive Investment into the sector.
Build an Inclusive Value Chain
The process of building an inclusive value chain entails involving a wide range of stakeholders in the development of new cookstove designs, local manufacturing projects, distribution efforts, marketing techniques, and awareness campaigns, among other areas.
Women are a particularly important component of the value chain as they are responsible for the cooking. They should not be merely seen as end-users, and their inclusion throughout the value chain will increase the successful adoption of clean cookstoves and fuels as well as their long-term use.
Women can be economically empowered by participating in, starting businesses around, and earning income from product design, engineering, manufacturing, marketing, distribution, sales, and other related enterprises, including the use of clean cooking technologies in businesses that involve cooking, such as restaurants and street food sales.