UGANDA: BGFA to Grant $5m for D.Light and Engie Solar Kits

As part of its activities in Uganda, the Beyond the Grid for Africa (BGFA) programme is selecting 2 companies to receive a grant for the installation of solar home systems. The grant, awarded following a call for expressions of interest, will help electrify 1.8 million people in Uganda.

The results of the Beyond the Grid for Africa (BGFA) call for electrification projects in Uganda are in. The BGFA has selected d.light Design Uganda, the subsidiary of d.light, a company based in San Francisco in the United States of America, and Engie Energy Access Uganda, the subsidiary of the French energy company Engie. To these 2 solar home system providers, the AFMO will provide performance-based grants worth $5.2 million.

“We are very pleased to partner with the BGFA programme to expand our business in Uganda. The funding received will enable us to expedite the development of energy access in rural Uganda, benefiting approximately 1 million people,” says Nick Imudia, Managing Director of d.light.

Its Ugandan subsidiary has been active in rural areas since year 2016. The company, which already claims to have sold 25 million products, mainly distributes solar lanterns, solar home systems, TVs, radios and smartphones. In its operations, d.light relies on the pay-as-you-go system that is very common in the solar home systems segment in Africa. And with the grant from the BGFA, d.light’s Ugandan subsidiary plans to install 200,000 solar home systems in Uganda.

For its part, Engie Energy Access plans to install 170,000 solar home systems over the next 4 years. In addition to distributing solar systems and other kits, including radios and televisions, the company is also installing solar mini-grids in other African countries. Under the AFMO programme, the company, led by Gillian-Alexandre Huart, is expected to provide access to electricity for 800 000 people in Uganda.

For the record, the AFMO is a multi-donor facility managed by the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO). The AFMO has been implementing a $107 million programme since year 2019 to support access to electricity from renewable sources in sub-Saharan Africa. The programme is also being implemented in Burkina Faso, Liberia, Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

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