Kubik, an Ethiopia-based startup, has secured a $3.34 million investment to expand its production capacity. The funding will support the company’s mission of converting plastic waste into affordable building materials, addressing the housing deficit and plastic pollution issues in Africa.
With the UN-Habitat estimating a need for 96,000 new homes worldwide, African countries like Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa are particularly affected by housing deficits due to rapid population growth and urbanization. However, despite contributing less than 10% of global plastic consumption, Africa faces significant challenges in managing plastic waste.
Kubik, co-founded by CEO Kidus Asfaw and Penda Marre, a former UNICEF colleague, offers a solution by transforming plastic waste into low-cost building materials. Asfaw highlights that their facility can process enough waste to construct up to 10,000 homes annually.
Climate tech venture capital firm Satgana joined the investment round, emphasizing Kubik’s potential to address pressing challenges in Africa. Other investors in the round include Unruly Capital, GIIG Africa Fund, Bestseller Foundation, Plug & Play, Kazana Fund, Princeton Alumni Angels, Savannah Fund, African Renaissance Partners, and Andav Capital.
Kubik’s building materials are not only affordable but also have additional benefits. They are non-flammable, non-degradable, and produce significantly lower greenhouse gas emissions compared to cement products.
Asfaw recognizes the urgent need for sustainable solutions as urbanization, plastic waste, unaffordable housing, and climate change pose significant challenges for cities worldwide. Kubik’s approach addresses these issues by providing a low-carbon, cost-effective building solution that effectively removes plastic waste from the environment.