Exploring Web3: Opportunities for Scaling ReFi
As ReFi innovators and investors, how do we bring in the startups that aren’t crypto-native but have an important role to play? We talk to RangeCarbon, Cinch Markets, Casa Real, and ACRE Africa in the second episode of our Twitter Space series exploring Web3.
Adoption is one of the biggest challenges to scaling regenerative finance (ReFi) in emerging markets.
As ReFi innovators and investors, how do we build bridges (literally and figuratively) to the startups that aren’t crypto-native, but have an important role to play in spurring and scaling regenerative? How do we leverage their unparalleled intelligence, channels, and relationships to those most proximate?
For example, how might smallholder farmers more easily access credit to transition to regenerative practices, while accessing insurance to protect against downside risks? How could carbon revenue reach local communities most affected by climate change?
We spoke with the founders and CEOs of non-crypto-native companies exploring how to integrate with emerging ReFi tools, protocols, and projects.
Claire Gagne joined us from RangeCarbon and is supporting Forest Carbon, a forest restoration project developer managing over 20,000 hectares of land in Indonesia. Forest Carbon’s clients include some of the biggest buyers in the voluntary carbon market, issuing millions of carbon credits per year. We explored the challenges that traditional project developers faced in completing sales, the importance of bringing more data on-chain to provide confidence to buyers, and where she sees the opportunities with the Web3 world to address some of these challenges.
Alexander Fankuchen joined us from Cinch Markets, a Kenyan-based land management enterprise that brings economies of industrial scale to the individual acre. Through aggregating land parcels held by smallholder farmers and managing them with economies of scale, Cinch focuses on increasing the cash flows of smallholder farmers while also reducing income volatility. We explored Cinch’s recent offering of a credit-type salary advance product and how Web3 has played a role in improving the product offering.
Richard Bahumwire joined us from Casa Real, an affordable property developer of climate-smart homes in Mozambique. Casa Real delivered the second cheapest house in Africa in 2021 for prices as low as $10,000 for a starter home, as recognized by the Center for Affordable Housing and the Africa Property Investments Awards. At the same time, climate resilient housing was only accessible to 3% of the population of Mozambique. We explored the challenges Casa Real faced in scaling this affordable model and where Web3 be helpful in increasing access to housing for underserved communities.
Ewan Wheeler joined us from ACRE Africa, a company closing the insurance gap for smallholder farmers across sub-Saharan Africa, of whom only 3% typically purchase crop insurance. Lack of transparency on policy status and slow settlement times are huge pain points — of which blockchain and smart contracts are uniquely positioned to solve. We explored how integrating with a Web3 solution helped to mitigate the pain points and offers opportunities to scale.
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