8 Miles, the $200m private equity fund backed by rock star activist Bob Geldof (pictured), has invested $5m in a start-up company that plans to build commodity exchanges across Africa and improve food security.

Eleni, a newly-formed company based in Nairobi, Kenya, was co-founded by Eleni Gabre-Madhin, the former head of the Ethiopia Commodity Exchange.

In January, Morgan Stanley and the International Finance Corporation agreed to make equity investments of $5m and $2.5m respectively in Eleni.

The backing from Geldof’s 8 Miles fund could raise Eleni’s profile further as it seeks to raise an additional $200m for new exchanges over the next three years.

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