Pan-African venture capital firm Novastar Ventures has secured $25 million in equity investment from the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) for its Africa People + Planet Fund, which is aimed at supporting startups building agriculture and climate solutions.

Novastar's new fund will invest in climate tech, cleantech and marketplaces, as well as initiatives that contribute to community resilience through financial and supply chain services.

The VC firm plans to back cleantech startups including clean utilities, electric mobility, smart logistics and alternative materials, as well as climate techs that deploy regenerative forestry, agriculture and aquaculture, biofuels and biochar, which protect biodiversity and improve soil health while capturing carbon.

The fund is Novastar’s third, following the $80m East Africa Fund and the $108m Africa Fund II, which saw the firm expand its geographic reach to West Africa. Novastar invests in tech-enabled mass-market start-ups in sectors such as agriculture, education and off-grid renewable energy.

Its previous fund invested in firms such as e-commerce scale-up TradeDepot, fintech Moniepoint, insurtech Turaco, furniture start-up MoKo, health-tech mpharma and agtech firm iProcure.