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African energy start-ups score interest and investment from financiers with support from GET.invest


Four African early-stage energy companies are actively pursuing investment and solidifying financial backing thanks to advisory support from Energy 4 Impact through the GET.invest Finance Readiness Support, a service of the European programme GET.invest that enables locally owned and managed clean energy businesses to access finance. Whilst Beninois solar supplier BM Solutions and Rwandan energy services company EcoGreen Solutions have initiated discussions with financiers, Ventura Logistics, a Nigeria-based solar mini-grid developer, and East-African e-mobility company Drive Electric are in advanced negotiations, eyeing substantial six- and seven-figure deals. Such progress is a vindication of the diligent preparation they have undertaken to strengthen their business model, demonstrate their impact and refine their value proposition with the guidance of their Energy 4 Impact mentor.

As Wangui Muna, a finance access consultant and SME advisor from Energy 4 Impact notes,

We’re proud that these agile young companies can now present a persuasive business case to investors at this crucial stage in their growth trajectory. Not only have they developed innovative solutions to broaden energy access in off-grid African regions, but they are also uniquely positioned to deliver them due to their deep familiarity with the needs and constraints of the local customer base. To achieve that impact, however, they must first secure funding to scale their operations, and it’s heartening to see them make such strides with assistance from GET.invest.   

Close to securing $1m from a financing facility, Drive Electric stands at the threshold of a noteworthy milestone in their project journey. This financing will accelerate their mission to improve the accessibility of electric vehicles and charging equipment for low-income customers, whilst also facilitating consumer financing from local financial institutions. Additionally, the company has also secured confirmation of interest from two more financing facilities for investment sums totalling over 700,000 EUR.

Drive Electric managed to attract such strong investor interest after acting upon tailored needs-based advisory support from Energy 4 Impact, coupled with strategic brainstorming sessions. Energy 4 Impact recommended setting up a dedicated research and development centre and investing in staff training and capacity building. As Francis Romano, CEO at Drive Electric, states,

Our journey through technical assistance and finance readiness support has been marked by immense strategic growth. We have since been able to better articulate our value proposition, as well as refine our business model and the way we present it to potential strategic partners. Positive discussions with investors validate all that hard work, and we're thrilled to see it paying off.

Support through GET.invest already helped mini-grid developer Ventura Logistics achieve a major breakthrough last year when they secured a $140K loan from FCMB Bank to finance the commissioning of their first site at Mebiowa in Nigeria. Further guidance from Energy 4 Impact facilitated the development of their business plan, an impact framework and a pitch deck. To advance their goal of commissioning two additional mini-grid sites, Energy 4 Impact connected the company with more financiers, resulting in the receipt of a USD 300k debt term sheet from an impact investor with funds set to disbursed imminently.

Two other companies supported through GET.invest have begun to court investors after undertaking critical preparatory work. BM Solutions, guided by Energy 4 Impact, developed a growth strategy and impact framework for their irrigation and refrigeration product offerings in Senegal and Benin. With a polished pitch deck and a data room in place, the company is now well-positioned to attract financing. EcoGreen Solutions, a Rwanda-based manufacturer and distributor of improved cookstoves, has trodden a similar path. With support from Energy 4 Impact, they developed a market pricing strategy and an impact monitoring framework to secure the investment needed to increase their production output of biomass pallets for cooking made from organic waste.

Wangui commented,

We have enjoyed working with these high potential companies through the pilot phase of the GET.invest Finance Readiness Support. Through our work we have realised positive growth for our companies and fostered excellent client relationships. Understanding each company’s unique needs and providing tailored technical assistance and investment readiness support at the right time can prove transformative for these fledging companies.  

About the GET.invest Finance Readiness Support

The GET.invest Finance Readiness Support enables locally owned and managed clean energy businesses to access finance. Launched in 2021, the service provides early-stage, micro, small and medium-sized energy companies in sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific with hands-on, in-depth business development support and coaching along their finance access journey. ​

Now entering into its second phase, the service is implemented by eight leading advisory firms – Advance Consulting, Catalyst Energy Advisors, Energy 4 Impact, GFA Consulting Group & I&P Conseil, GreenMax Capital Group, Inensus, Open Capital and Persistent – as part of the European programme GET.invest, supported by the European Union, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria.

Companies interested in the GET.invest Finance Readiness Support can apply starting Q1 2024.