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EU-funded investment facility EDFI ElectriFI and Dutch impact investor Oikocredit have agreed to co-invest $4 million each in the Canadian solar energy company, Solar Panda, which distributes solar home systems to low-income communities in Kenya.
The new funding from two European investors will enable Solar Panda to offer off-grid solar electricity to more than 100,000 houses across northern and northeastern Kenya, which are considered the poorest regions in the country. This partnership will sustain in-country growth of clean, reliable, and affordable domestic electricity.
Solar Panda will utilize the $8 million investment to expand its footprint within Kenya’s underserved communities and also set the stage for expanding its business in other Sub-Saharan African countries. The pay-as-you-go solar home systems provider will deploy 8.4 MW of renewable energy over the next few years, avoiding CO2 emissions of more than 400,000 tons.
Since 2018, Solar Panda has provided solar kits for more than 2000,000 households. Andy Keith, Founder & CEO of Solar Panda, said, the new funding will help the company to ramp up its efforts to achieve universal electrification. EDFI ElectriFI and Oikocredit have supported the company’s approach to balancing commercial pragmatism and its commitment to the customers.
Alexander Remy, Equity Officer at Oikocredit, appreciated Solar Panda which has demonstrated its capabilities in providing quality solar home systems to many households across Kenya. As an equity investor in clean energy for social impact and a shareholder in Solar Panda, Oikocredit will continue to support access to renewable energy and improve the quality of life for low-income communities in Kenya.
According to Lionel Dieu, ElectriFI Senior Investment Officer at EDFI Management Company, Solar Panda has shown impressive growth over the last few years and demonstrated strong resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic. Their investment with Oikocredit aims to support the solar company in developing its new stage, reaching an increasing amount of households in Kenya’s Northern regions displaying higher energy poverty levels.