Ten off-grid energy start-ups have been selected to benefit from the funding interventions and technical assistance jointly provided by All On, an independent impact investment company, and the United States African Development Foundation (USADF).
The ten companies participated in the 2018 Nigerian Off-Grid Energy Challenge sponsored by All On and the USADF, and emerged winners in various categories.
The Off-Grid Energy challenge is a joint effort by the USADF and All On to develop, scale up or extend the use of renewable off-grid energy technologies to reach communities not served by existing power grids.
Through the challenge, USADF provided $50, 000 in seed capital while All On provided up to $50, 000 in convertible debt to selected energy companies enterprises who are 100 per cent Nigerian companies. In addition to funding, the winners will also receive technical assistance from USADF and the governance support from All On.
The 10 companies selected from three categories include Havenhill, Prado, Solmenz, A4&T, Darway Coast, all in the mini-grid category.
Those selected from the enabling business category include Auxano, Eastwind and Alyx; while companies that emerged from the solar home system category are Creeds and iKabin.
Announcing the winners at the Nigerian Off-Grid Energy summit 2018 in Lagos, the President/Chief Executive Officer, USADF, Mr. C. Glin, said the collaboration was aimed at co-financing and seeding up 30 innovative Nigerian off-grid energy companies operating in the country over a three-year period.
Glin said: “We are proud to partner ‘All On’ to foster the growth of local enterprises to bring power and connectivity to underserved Nigerians. This partnership combines grant capital with sector funding to support selected Nigerian energy enterprises with the means to grow their businesses, increase access to power and change people’s lives.”
On his part, Chief Executive Officer of All On, Dr. Wiebe Boer, said the biggest challenge hindering Nigeria’s economic and social development is access to energy, stressing that the off-grid energy companies were introducing innovations that would improve household livelihoods and local economies by providing affordable power to underserved communities.
“We are proud to partner USADF to provide an innovative blend of financing to these companies to enable them scale up and meet the increasing demand,” Boer said.
Commenting on the intervention by All On and the USADF, one of the beneficiaries and founder of Creek, a solar home system company, Hannah Kabir, said: “The USADF-All On funds will facilitate the scale-up of our lease-to-own standalone solar systems to over 100 SMEs in Plateau and Rivers States with affordable installment repayments.”