Shell-founded startup fund receives $13 million from Canadian DFI to accelerate clean energy access in Africa – TechCrunch

FinDev Canada has pumped $13 million into the Energy Entrepreneur Growth Fund (EEGF), which invests in early-stage growth energy companies in sub-Saharan Africa. Part of the funding will go towards increasing access to clean energy for households and off-grid businesses in the region.

The $120 million EEGF, set up in 2019 by the Shell Foundation – and co-financed by UKaid and Dutch Entrepreneurship Development Bank FMO, expands financing in the form of debt (stimulus or mezzanine) or equity for companies in the energy sector . EEGF is administered by Triple Jump; Influential Investment Manager advised by Persistent; Climate project creator.

FinDev Canada participated in fundraising through 2X Canada, an impact investment facility driving the economic empowerment of low-income and underserved populations in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The funding will help accelerate innovation in the clean energy industry after the Covid-19 slowdown, Paulo Martelli, FinDev Canada’s vice president and chief investment officer, said in a statement.

The pandemic has slowed the electricity supply in Africa, which was already lagging before the health crisis. By increasing EEGF’s ability to invest in the sector, FinDev Canada and its 2X Canada facilities support energy companies committed to expanding access to clean, reliable energy for African households and businesses, leading to inclusive and sustainable growth and improving the lives of millions,” he said.

The fund invests in at least half of the companies that explicitly address the energy needs of women consumers and entrepreneurs in Africa, and those that provide renewable energy solutions to businesses and families. It is estimated that 75% of the world’s population in sub-Saharan Africa has no access to electricity and renewable energy solutions could be used to fill this gap.

“An equitable and inclusive energy transition that alleviates energy poverty and curbs climate change requires an understanding of the financing needs of the entrepreneurs we depend on to achieve our global energy access goals,” said Gareth Zaher, Shell’s Director of Operations. -invoice.

“FinDev Canada’s investment in the fund will help it expand the provision of flexible financing solutions to entrepreneurs, and accelerate access to clean, reliable energy for millions of lives in Africa.”

Last year, EEGF invested in Baobab+ and Yellow, both of which offer paid-for solar energy solutions, and Redavia, which designs and installs mobile solar farms for businesses.

Redavia, which has clients in Ghana, Kenya and Tanzania, received $3.7 million in mezzanine investments from the fund. The startup aims to install more than 85 megawatts of solar power across the continent. By September last year, it had installed “approximately 90 solar modules, with a capacity of 7 megawatts of solar energy.”

Yellow, which operates in Malawi and Uganda and allows families and small businesses to pay for solar energy systems in installments, took $4 million, while Baobab+ got $2.3 million. Baobab+ has operations in Mali, Senegal, Madagascar and Côte d’Ivoire, and plans to enter the Nigeria and Democratic Republic of Congo markets.

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