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Off-grid Projects

GreenMax has been retained by the companies described here to raise concessional funding, equity investment and organize debt facilities to support the development of a wide variety of distributed generation projects, ranging from stand-alone solar–battery systems serving universities or industrial parks to community mini/micro-grids with anchor industrial or commercial customer loads to solar home system or clean cooking PayG platforms. We invite you to review these opportunities and contact GreenMax for further information.
GreenMax is the leading Transaction Advisor for clean energy projects in Africa. In addition to these off-grid companies, we presently support more than 20 utility scale projects seeking funding. GreenMax provides a full suite of advisory services to assist developers and investors to cultivate bankable renewable energy projects and enterprises.
November 2017

Please contact Clifford J. Aron (e-mail:

Distributed Generation, Mini-Grid and Off-Grid Funding/Investment Opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa

50 MW Solar Mini-Grids Portfolio, Jigawa State, Nigeria.
Trust Synergy Infrastructures Limited (TSIL) is a renewable energy developer based in Kano, Nigeria. TSIL currently has a pipeline consisting of over 50 MW of off-grid renewable energy projects - comprising of a solar PV plant for Kano Economic City (KEC); two captive solar PV plants for the Bompai and Sharada Challawa Industrial Districts in Kano in partnership with the Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria Power Development Company; a captive solar PV plant for Kano State University of Science and Technology.
Kano Economic City (KEC) is a 117-hectare ultra-modern market along Zaria Road, Kano being developed by Brains & Hammers under a Joint Venture Agreement with the Kano State Government signed on the 12th of December 2016. The KEC, which will house over 10,000 shops and stalls is planned to be implemented in 3 phases over 5 – 7 years and will be completely off-grid. TSIL is currently in negotiations with Brains & Hammers to provide a ground mounted 10MW solar PV plant to power the KEC.

Solynta Distributed Solar PV, Nigeria.
Solynta is a fast-growing distributed energy company providing solar energy power solutions to under-served urban customers in Nigeria, with the aim to displace the country’s estimated 60 million fossil-fuel generators. Solynta provides new access to reliable, clean, affordable solar energy to households and commercial entities in Nigeria via innovative lease finance offerings also known as Lease-to-own (LTO), which allows customers to make affordable monthly instalment payments instead of upfront lump-sum payments. The lease finance offerings consist of 2-year, 5-year, and 10-year LTO plans, with the 10-year (PAYG) plan accounting for 51% of Solynta’s current business portfolio. Solynta has successfully deployed over 420 solar systems ranging from 0.5KW to 10KW systems across Nigeria with a total installed capacity of over 1MW and has developed a growth plan for high market penetration by the year 2023.
Solynta’s target customers typically receive sporadic grid power supply and hence often rely on unsafe, expensive fossil-fuel generators, due to hugely inadequate and underdeveloped grid infrastructure. Solynta secures 3 - 4 additional orders every week and has a strong pipeline of PAYG projects to install about 27,000 solar power systems for which contract award letters have been secured from the customers totalling 45MW in aggregate capacity. These projects will eliminate the use of on-site diesel generators and save customers approximately 50% of their current monthly energy costs.

Kwara State Mini Grids, Nigeria.
Solar Era Nigeria Limited (SEN) – a subsidiary of Africa Growth & Energy Solutions (AGES) – is currently co-developing a series of Solar mini-grid projects across rural communities in Kwara State with Harmony Holdings Ltd (HHL), a wholly owned company of Kwara State Government. The first phase of the mini-grid projects are planned to be 15 KW capacity micro-grid systems in 20 off-grid communities, adding up to an aggregate capacity of 300KW installations.

1 MW Solar PV Project & Telecom Mini-Grid Rollout, Cameroon.
Solar Era Cameroon (“SEC”) is developing a series of mini-grid projects with the plan to light up Cameroon with mini-grids powered by solar PV with battery storage systems. SEC has adopted a phased development approach, with the first phase being a total capacity of up to 20MWp, consisting of 20 independent 1MW maximum capacity mini-grid systems in 20 council districts in Cameroon, SEC has started with Konye and Fundong councils by signing MOUs with the local authorities. SEC has also signed MOUs with the government of Cameroon.
For the first project in Konye council, SEC has completed a pre-feasibility study and secured land for the project. The project is expected to provide energy to 2,500 households, or 20,000 people, to power their appliances from lights to refrigerators. SEC is working with the government to obtain a sovereign guarantee. SEC plans to complete the first 1MW project in Konye and then roll out implementation of the other 19 mini-grids.
In addition to supporting the rollout of the Konye project, SEC is developing a large-scale model of solar mini-grids to supply off-grid power to 200 telecom towers throughout the country operated by CAMTEL. Currently, SEH is launching a pilot installation of a community micro-grid anchored by a cellular tower electric load, as a “proof of concept” for this business model.
SEC is a subsidiary of Africa Growth & Energy Solutions (AGES) which is a micro multi-national company, incorporated in the UK, developing renewable projects across west Africa, with offices in London, Freetown and Douala.

Rensource Distributed Solar PV, Nigeria.
Rensource is a fast-growing distributed energy company providing innovative solar solutions and financing to consumers and small businesses in urban/peri-urban Nigeria thereby bridging the wide electricity demand-grid supply gap. Rensource aims to replace individual fossil-fuel generators across Nigeria on a large scale with distributed solar assets in the 300W-3kW capacity range via a scalable Power-as-a-Service model, whereby solar systems are installed at customers’ premises but owned and maintained by Rensource for a monthly subscription fee. Rensource’s systems are remotely controlled/monitored via Machine-to-Machine bidirectional communication over GPRS and feature a unique and innovative German-built lithium-lead hybrid storage technology, which stands out in that it combines superb lithium system performance with low lead-acid system costs. This is coupled with in-built intelligent load management capability which enables customers to make the most of the energy generated by the solar panels, thereby providing them with a service that cannot be matched by any competitor.
The company was incorporated in Nigeria in February 2016 and has since successfully deployed about 300 of its 300Wp solar systems (“The SunnyGo") bundled with DC appliances (LED lights, a fan and a TV) to underserved lower/middle income residential consumers/small businesses in Lagos, Ondo, Ekiti, Abuja, Niger, Oyo and Kano states replacing the so called “I-better-pass-my-neighbor” generators. Rensource aims to have an installed base of 15,000 systems by 2020, growing to 340,000 systems by 2027.

PAY-GO Energy Clean Cooking Fuel Project, Kenya.
PayGo Energy Ltd (“PayGo”) has developed a smart metering technology to introduce a pay-as-you-go service for clean cooking LPG fuel in Kenya, which will unlock access to clean cooking fuel for millions of households in Kenya and across East Africa. In Kenya where 75% of use expensive, unhealthy and unsustainable charcoal and kerosene fuels for cooking, low income Kenyans, those earning less than $100 a month, rely almost exclusively on these dirty energy sources for cooking. PayGo’s innovative technology makes clean coking fuel affordable by eliminating households’ upfront LPG Fuel cost and investment necessary to procure new appliances.
In 2014 PayGo conducted a pilot project, offering services to 1,400 households in Mukuru and Kibera, the two largest slums in Nairobi. The results were positive and PayGo is now planning to scale up service with 500,000 LPG cylinders and stoves. Currently, PayGo is in the process of obtaining a license to distribute LPG cylinders from the Kenyan Energy Regulatory Commission.

Production of liquefied C02 and mini-grid power from maize stover, Ghana.
Arela Chemicals is pioneering the sustainable production of food grade liquefied carbon dioxide for local beverage makers in Ghana. Liquefied CO2 will be produced in a manufacturing plant by upgrading biogas generated by the anaerobic digestion of locally sourced maize stover, thus improving the sustainability and profitability of maize farmers as well as carbonated beverage producers. This biogas will also be used to generate 100% of the plant’s electricity demand, thereby enabling off-grid operation as well as for generation of electricity to the neighbouring communities through a mini-grid. Roughly 1MW is expected to be available to supply the community mini grids.
Excess methane can also be compressed and sold as an additional revenue stream. This production approach enables Arela to eliminate high costs and unreliable supply of electricity while reducing the carbon footprint of its operations. These savings are passed onto the beverage makers by providing them with an up to 50% discount on their liquefied CO2 costs. The venture will generate EBTIDA margins of up to 44% over an eight-year period from startup.
Arela has signed feed-stock supply MOU agreements with over 228 maize farmers which includes both small-holder and commercial farmers, to supply the maize Stover required for the project in exchange for supply of organic fertilizers which will be a by-product of the plant. Arela is in the process of finalizing the land arrangements to secure the land for the facility as well as negotiating the final off take agreement with two beverage manufacturers in Ghana who will buy the CO2 from the project. Arela’s strategy of sourcing maize stover also improves the profitability of maize farmers by increasing their crop yield by simply clearing the stover from the field instead of the in-situ burning of residue to clear fields for subsequent planting which compromises soil nutrition by depleting valuable nitrogen and increasing acidity over time. Additionally, we provide farmers with reliable access to a nutrient-rich organic fertilizer that is produced as a byproduct of the anaerobic digestion process.

Bzisol-CIKAR 1MW solar PV mini grid at the CIKAR palm oil factory
Bzisol has partnered with the CIKAR Palm Oil Company in Burundi to develop up to 1MW of solar PV that will supply all electricity to the CIKAR palm oil processing facility and provide its excess power either to the community as a micro-grid.
Bzisol is a Swedish company founded by Burundian expatriates, which works to develop and implement small scale renewable energy projects in Africa. In addition to the CIKAR project, they have secured AECF REACT funding for pico solar distribution in Zambia and Malawi.
CIKAR is a few year old palm oil producer which relies exclusively on palm supplied from a network of small farm-holders in Burundi. They have applied for and expect to receive Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification.

Bishop Okullo College 2MW Distributed Energy Solar PV Project, Kenya.
Bishop Okullu Solar Farm, Ltd. (BOSF) is a newly established private power producer based in Asembo, Kenya. BOSF is owned by nonprofit entities, and its charter requires that the net profit earned from the solar project be reinvested in projects which directly benefit the local community.
The 2MW project will be built on 80 acres of land which will be leased by BOSF from Bishop Okullu College. The project is being sponsored by Bishop Okullu College, Bishop David Kodia, recently installed as Bishop of the Bondo Diocese by the Anglican Church in Kenya, and Charity+Power International, Inc., a Texas nonprofit corporation (CPI). BOSF is owned 50% by Bishop Okullu College and 50% by CPI. Power generated by the Project would be delivered to Bishop Okullu College, Kokise Primary School, Kokise Secondary School and St. John’s Anglican Church, all located adjacent to the project, and to idled irrigation pumps owned by Bishop Okullu College and located .5 kilometers from the project. The medical clinic and pharmacy will be located on adjacent land owned by Bishop Okullu College and the water purification and bottling plant will be located adjacent to the irrigation pumps.
BOSF has executed a Letter of Intent with Kinetech Power System, Inc. (KPS), based in Irvine, California, to install their patented Flywheel Energy Storage System, at Bishop Okullu College, at Kinetech’s cost. The technology is the recipient of the first place prize of the 2017 CleanTech Challenge of Mexico. In addition, KPS won the 2017 CitiBanamex and City Express Hotel CleanTech Sister Challenges. The KPS technology uses a proprietary flywheel hub design that incorporates a self-centering flywheel-shaft coupling for harmonics compensation, solid lubricated bearings for minimal losses and a high efficiency switch reluctance motor generator. The technology allows solar generators to implement controllable peak generation shaving, storing of the energy, demand response and frequency regulation techniques as well as provide emergency back-up power.

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