Niraj Varia - Novastar Ventures
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Niraj

Investment Director

Prior to working at Novastar, Niraj co-Founded and led Takamoto Biogas, a business that provided smallholder dairy farmers in Kenya with biogas using a unique Pay-As-You-Go model, using proprietary technology that integrated mobile payments, smart metering and remote system monitoring.

Niraj has also co-Founded ki.chen a company delivering high quality meals to professionals in Nairobi, and invested in several other social enterprises.

Prior to Takamoto Biogas, Niraj spent 3 years designing large agribusiness programmes for Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and TechnoServe. He led the design of a 4 country rice programme, a review of the soybean industry in 7 countries in Africa and helped a UK-based charity design an SME fund to invest in businesses that deliver positive impact for children in Eastern Africa.

Before this, Niraj spent 4 years at McKinsey & Co. focusing on strategy and sales & marketing assignments for private and public sector organisations in Europe and Africa. Niraj began his career as an actuary with Munich Reinsurance Co in the UK.

Since 2009, Niraj has been the Chairman of On Purpose, a social enterprise in the UK that helps young professionals enter the social enterprise sector through work experience, training, mentorship and coaching.

Niraj earned an honours degree in Actuarial Mathematics and Statistics at Heriot-Watt University in Scotland.