Five African entrepreneurs have been selected from 120 applicants to receive the inaugural “Energy Access Booster” awards. The winners were announced during the Unlocking Solar Capital: Africa conference, held in Kigali, Rwanda on November 7th and 8th, 2018.

The awards are in support of Sustainable Development Goal 7 to provide reliable, affordable and clean energy for all by 2030. This means providing electricity to 1 billion people and clean cooking systems to 3 billion people worldwide within the next 12 years.

Those being honored are entrepreneurs who are implementing energy access projects in Africa, with a focus on four sectors: green mini-grids, sustainable mobility, refrigeration, and energy for drinking water and agriculture.

The awards are being sponsored by TOTAL, ENEA Consulting and Acumen in partnership with Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL).

The selected entrepreneurial companies are:

  • Agsol , operating in Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia, is a product development company replacing laborious hand labor and diesel machines in rural areas with solar-powered agricultural transformation equipment.
  • Kivu Green Energy, operating in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), is developing solar mini-grids in eastern DRC.
  • Mucho Mangoes operates a solar mango drying unit in Kenya and is planning to develop a cold storage facility using thermal energy storage technology to reduce post-harvest losses and increase incomes for 200 mango farmers
  • Solar Freeze markets solar-powered refrigeration solutions to Kenyan farmers based on a micro-franchising approach
  • Sunny Irrigation, operating in Kenya, is developing solar irrigation pumps for small- scale farmers through a Pay-As-You-Go model.

“We are convinced that we have selected very promising companies and look forward to collaborating with them.  We wish them all the success they deserve” said the jury.

The winning entrepreneurs will be supported in their development during the next 12 months in reaching the investment stage. They will receive strategic advisory consulting support and/or a financial contribution of up to $50,000 per entrepreneur, operational/local support, and visibility for the project.

The “Energy Access Booster” has already achieved the outcome that has been envisaged by its organizers and they are pleased to announce future awards will be granted.