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EkoRent Africa, a business supported by InfraCo Africa and EEP Africa, and Strathmore Energy Research Center have signed a ‘Solar Charging Project Collaboration Agreement’ to set up a framework for developing Kenya’s first Nopea SolarHub Electric Vehicle Charging Station.
NopeaRide is an all-electric taxi-hailing service in Nairobi, operated by EkoRent with 14 grid-tied EV charging points in six different locations across the city. The new solar hub will now facilitate its electric vehicles with solar-powered charging.
Juha Suojanen, the Founder and CEO of EkoRent, mentioned the ambitions of the e-mobility company during the signing event.
“The collaboration announced today is an exciting next step for NopeaRide in Nairobi. We look forward to cooperating with Strathmore Energy Research Centre, through its dedicated Research and Consultancy Centre, in finding localized solutions to further promote clean mobility in Kenya and Africa,” said the CEO of EkoRent.
Under the terms of the agreement signed, the Strathmore University Energy Research Center will provide access in its campus for NopeaRide to develop and install the solar-powered charging stations for use by NopeaRide’s 100% electric taxis.
The Nopea SolarHub charging stations to be developed on campus of the Strathmore University are the first of their kind in Kenya and demonstrate the possibility to efficiently combine clean energy with clean mobility solutions. Considering Kenya’s sun-drenched location, it is ideal for harvesting clean solar energy and leading the transportation sector of the country towards zero emissions.
Prof. Izael Da Silva, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation at Strathmore University, said, “We are honored to collaborate with EkoRent Africa in this monumental effort to achieve zero-emission mobility in Africa. Strathmore University prepares students to create projects that address societal issues. Higher education institutions are think-tanks where solutions to societal problems are produced, hence partnering with corporations to advance such revolutionary agendas is critical.”
Ravi Dhanani, Asset Manager of InfraCo Africa, said the collaboration will help in harnessing Kenya’s solar potential to support the growth in clean transport solutions as well as sustainable jobs. The initiative will provide guidance for InfraCo Africa’s wider EV portfolio.
Lotta Wilkman, the Portfolio Coordinator at EEP Africa, said the financing institution is pleased to support the partnership between the pioneering electric mobility services and the leading research institution in Kenya. The SolarHub charging station for NopeaRide’s electric taxis will effectively reduce pollution and provide increased income for taxi drivers in Nairobi.