Daniel Anastos '08, Entrepreneur
FreshBox Team (L-R): John, Daniel ’08 and Forest in Nairobi, Kenya – City Park MarketCongratulations to our 2018 Wings of Honor recipient, Daniel Anastos!
Anastos is currently working at Komaza, a micro-forestry company that is supporting smallholder farmers in Kenya. Komaza is headquartered in Kilifi, Kenya, and supports thousands of smallholder farmers to grow trees to help address the massive shortage of wood through out the area and to provide an additional long-term means of income. Anastos was hired as a Fellow in Operations in February 2017 to work in the Harvest Department as the farmers were beginning the harvest of trees. He was promoted to Associate in Operations and is responsible for the planning and implementation of all harvesting operations.
In addition, Anastos is a co-founder of FreshBox
, a start-up headquartered in Nairobi with a mission to address the startling statistics that up to 40% of food in East Africa is lost or wasted. A key factor in this situation is the lack of refrigeration, especially as it affects small farmers with few resources.
FreshBox's flagship product is a large commercial cooling unit that fits conveniently in a vendor space at fruit and vegetable markets across Kenya. Through our inviting customer experience, we are supporting the economic future of merchants across Kenya by allowing them to sell a higher percentage of their produce. Our revolutionary solar-powered refrigeration technology will take us off the grid and help us reach the last mile of poverty eradication in Africa.
A key component of making FreshBox successful is having access to capital and experienced people. Anastos and his co-founders competed to earn a spot in an “accelerator.” They are now involved in a six month program where they are being sponsored to learn about strategy, financing, operations, and other functions and topics to help them be successful.
Anastos found his way to Kenya after spending six months as the strategic Initiatives Intern at Kiva, a nonprofit in San Francisco. Here he learned about financial inclusion and the power of micro-lending to individuals throughout the world. A key initiative that Anastos worked on was designing a "crowd vetting" platform where MBA candidates and financial professionals could perform due diligence and contribute to the overall investment decision, democratizing the investment.
Before Kiva, Anastos attended Vanderbilt University and studied Engineering Science. He graduated in 2016. During his time there, he was an assistant for a PhD candidate, conducting research on lithium batteries. He held many leadership positions during his college years and was involved as a volunteer in a number of organizations (Teach Twice and Engineers without Borders). Anastos spent a summer on Kodiak Island, Alaska as a set net fisherman where he learned much about the local nature and the lives of people who live remotely.
While at Corona del Mar high school, Anastos earned his Eagle Scout rank and participated in a number of volunteer organizations including tutoring at Pomona Elementary.