ARE Member EDP Renováveis will invest $3 million in Rensource, a company that develops and manages decentralised solar energy systems, to support its expansion in Nigeria. With this investment, EDP reinforces the group's strategy for universal access to sustainable energy, which has been promoted through the A2E (Access to Energy) programme.
Rensource, established in 2015 in the US and operating in Nigeria since 2016, is a company specialised in implementing and managing decentralised solar energy systems, which enable the generation and distribution of electricity as well as the trading of energy services in the different communities in which it is present. The company is already in seven states of the country, focusing on small businesses and micro-companies, and has more than 200 employees.
This $3 million investment (about € 2.6 million) - which was the result of a financing initiative completed by EDP Renováveis and other international investors such as CRE Ventures, Omidyar Network, Inspired Evolution, Proparco, I&P, Sin Capital and Yuzura Honda - will allow EDP Renováveis to participate in Africa's largest market. The goal now is to support the company's expansion in Nigeria, the initial focus of Rensource's strategy, and to bring sustainable, low-cost energy solutions to more communities.
“EDP has long been committed to supporting solutions that promote universal, affordable and sustainable access to clean energy, especially in disadvantaged and developing communities”, as António Mexia, CEO of EDP, explains. “The Rensource project reflects this ambition by developing systems that support a fair energetic transition and contribute to the growth and sustainability of local economies through access to renewable energies.”
With this new investment, EDP continues the strategy defined in the A2E programme, in which it has committed to investing 12 million euros by 2020, impacting 200,000 people, mainly in developing countries. In addition to promoting sustainable energy for all, this strategy enables EDP to become a relevant A2E operator in emerging markets.
This commitment is alongside the investment of one million euros in social responsibility activities that, through a philanthropic fund, aim to reduce electricity exclusion, something that still affects nearly one billion people.
These ambitions are in line with Rensource's own growth plan. Ademola Adesina, founder and CEO of the US-based company, believes that simultaneously greening and decentralising its power infrastructure is the only way to navigate Nigeria to break out of its current state of energy poverty. He adds that pursuing this with a focus on the millions of small businesses that drive the Nigerian economy creates a massive multiplier effect whose benefit accrues to all. “The push into O2O (offline to online) is a natural step that takes advantage of Rensource's existing infrastructure to further empower the merchants we serve. Our goal is to connect 500,000 merchants over the next five years and, in this context, we welcome EDPR to the Rensource project and look forward, together, to achieve our ambition goals.”