Kenya’s M-KOPA and Tanzania’s Off Grid Electric have been named in the 2017 Global Cleantech 100, which lists the most innovative and promising companies in cleantech; those with potentials to solve tomorrow’s clean technology challenges.
Launched in 2011, Off Grid Electric tackles the problem of lack of access to electricity by providing affordable, reliable light and energy services to 10,000 households per month to families faced with an expensive grid, an unreliable grid, or no grid access at all.
This feat is achieved through a business model that allows customers to pre-pay for electrical services using mobile money, providing them access to small-scale, radically efficient solar home systems with integrated appliances.
Headquartered in Arusha, a city in northern Tanzania, Off Grid Electric
has raised a total sum of US$58.15 million, the latest being a US$5million grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development’s U.S. Global Development Lab.
On the other hand, M-KOPA manufactures solar home systems for low-income households and makes them available on a pay-as-you-go instalment plan.
After an initial deposit of US$30, customers pay 50cents by mobile money daily for a year. After completing the payment plan, customers own the solar systems and can also upgrade for more power.
Since launching in 2011, M-KOPA has connected more than 280,000 homes in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda to solar power and is adding over 500 homes on a daily basis.
It has raised a total sum of US$38.9 million, the latest being US$19million from London-based Generation Investment Management LLP, investment management firm.
Also on the list is Berlin-based pay-as-you-go solar energy service company, Mobisol which raised US$15.53 million last year to deliver solar home systems in East Africa, and BBOXX, a British off-grid solar startup which makes solar products for Africa and the developing world.
“We are delighted to have been recognised for our innovation and engineering. The team is constantly striving to improve our solar technology in order to provide the on-grid experience to off-grid customers in a cost-effective, scalable way,” said Mansoor Hamayun, CEO of BBOXX.
Now in its eight year, the CTG (Cleantech Group) produced Global Cleantech 100 is a comprehensive list of private companies with the highest potential to make significant market impact within a 5-10 year timeframe.
These companies are chosen by combining proprietary CTG research data, with weighted qualitative judgments of hundreds of nominations, and specific inputs from a global 86-person Expert Panel.