Off Grid Electric raises US$25 million to provide solar power to homes in Africa

PV Magazine
October 22, 2015

BYCHRISTIAN ROSELUND

OGE’s C round is the largest ven­ture cap­i­tal fund­ing round for dis­trib­uted energy in Africa to date. The com­pany is cur­rently deploy­ing 10,000 home solar sys­tems per month in Tan­za­nia using a leas­ing model.

Off Grid Elec­tric has recently entered its sec­ond national mar­ket in Rwanda.

Most of the solar deployed to date has been in wealthy nations in West­ern Europe, the United States and Japan, as a means to sub­sti­tute dirt­ier sources of elec­tric­ity. How­ever, solar power holds huge promise for res­i­dents of the devel­op­ing world, not only a means of clean power, but as a means of electrification.

To date, many of these efforts have been at a rel­a­tively small scale, and busi­nesses from the devel­oped world are chal­lenged by work­ing in an envi­ron­ment that is very dif­fer­ent than that in their home nations.

At least one com­pany seems to be meet­ing these chal­lenges and scal­ing its oper­a­tions to access this vast, mostly untapped mar­ket of the more than one bil­lion peo­ple glob­ally who do not have reli­able access to electricity.

On Thurs­day, Off Grid Elec­tric announced that it had raised US$25 mil­lion in a series C invest­ment round, led by DBL Part­ners. Join­ing DBL are new and return­ing investors, includ­ing the pri­vate invest­ment firm of Microsoft co-​​Founder Paul Allen and eBay Founder Pierre Omidyar’s fund Omid­yar Network.

DBL Part­ners Founder and Man­ag­ing Part­ner Nancy Pfund says that the com­pany has a set of strengths that make it suited to this work.

To read the full arti­cle, visit PV Mag­a­zine.