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Water Unite Impact Backs Jibu, A Leading Innovator In The East African Water Sector



Water Unite Impact is delighted to announce our investment of USD 500,000 in Jibu. Operating in seven countries of East Africa, Jibu is a leading innovator in the distribution of clean drinking water to low-income population.


Jibu operates 160 water production and distribution franchises that operate ~8,500 retail points throughout Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Burundi and DR Congo. In 2021, they supplied 102 million litres of affordable clean drinking water to over 380,000 daily beneficiaries and Jibu franchisees generated a cumulative turnover of more than $12M from Jibu water sales. Since inception, Jibu franchise owners have sold over 400 million litres at a price averaging $0.07 per Litre.


More than 1 billion people in the world do not have access to safe drinking water and 52% of the world’s population will live in water-stressed regions by 2050. This gap has huge consequences in public health, attendance to school for children and work absenteeism for adults. Water kiosks operated by Jibu provides a solution to this problem at a cost that is affordable to low-income families.


Water kiosks are a solution to mitigate issues arising from water scarcity, mounting difficulties in sourcing drinking water for low-income communities as well as rising pollution of water resources. A significant increase in CO2 emissions avoided is expected from water kiosks using its local, decentralized water production model.

The majority of Jibu’s clients did not previously purchase safe drinking water. Prior to using Jibu, most customers boiled water. Buying bottled water refills helps them save a significant proportion of disposable income as well as avoid emissions of GHGs.


Jibu created 1,200 direct jobs in 2021 within its franchise network. ~40% of franchises are owned by women, with the aim of 50% of all franchises to be women-led by 2025. Jibu promotes access to entrepreneurship for young people and gives them training to operate within strict quality standards. Production and operations are digitally enabled and monitored, allowing Jibu a high degree of control over the quality of water sold.


Cyrille Antignac, the Portfolio Director of the Water Unite Impact vehicle says: We believe that Jibu is the most promising enterprise in the emerging water kiosk sector with strong management and exceptional achievements behind them to prove their commercial concept. We trust they will achieve their ambitious plans to reach in excess of 1,500 new franchises by 2028. We look forward to supporting Jibu in its future developments”.

Jibu joins Water Unite Impact’s growing portfolio of innovative small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the WASH and circular economy sectors, including Sanivation, Mr. Green Africa and GREE Energy.


NOTES TO EDITORS:


Media contact: Louis Goring-Morris, mediarelations@waterunite.org / +44 7851 256875


Media photos: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/18QAXhVmii7Iii-qarz5PgzUIFsPU0z_T?usp=sharing


ABOUT WATER UNITE IMPACT

Water Unite Impact is an investment vehicle developed in partnership between nonprofit Water Unite and Wellers Impact, an FCA regulated impact investment manager, headquartered in London with an office in Nairobi, Kenya. Water Unite Impact invests into private sector water SMEs globally to transform lives and communities whilst generating risk-adjusted, market-rate returns for investors. waterunite.org/water-unite-impact


ABOUT WELLERS IMPACT

Wellers Impact is an FCA-regulated impact investment manager based in the UK. The team’s investment models are centred on using fair economics to pursue SDGs-aligned impact. Wellers Impact has three core business activities; real estate development in partnership with land-owning East African not-for-profits, provision of Sustainable Development Finance and Water Unite Impact. wellersimpact.com


ABOUT WATER UNITE

Water Unite is a global non-profit working to provide clean water for people and planet. This is done by uniting corporate partners around a common collective action - namely to create a small micro-contribution from products and services to fill the funding gaps in the water sector. Large corporates including Co-op, Elior PLC and Britvic PLC have already joined Water Unite. waterunite.org


ABOUT JIBU

Jibu is a business that capitalizes and equips entrepreneurs in emerging market communities to own essential service franchises, with water as an anchor product. The company’s vision is to train, finance, and grow a network of co-invested business owners who will revolutionize the way critical resources are leveraged to develop essential infrastructure in emerging markets. Driven by a belief in the power of eye-to-eye partnership to unleash latent entrepreneurial talent, Jibu is transforming the challenge of addressing basic human needs into an expansive opportunity that allows thousands of entrepreneurs to build lasting solutions, one neighbourhood at a time. For additional information, please visit: http://jibu.co/