Early stage C&I solar company with a focus on West Africa closes investment with ARE Member EAV
Nairobi, 7 July 2020 – SolarX, a Mali-based solar company, is pleased to announce the close of its Series A round led by ARE Member Energy Access Ventures (EAV), an early-stage fund investing in and supporting decentralised energy companies across sub-Saharan Africa.
SolarX focuses on West Africa, a region where electricity access remains expensive and unreliable for many commercial and industrial (C&I) businesses. This presents a significant opportunity for solar energy given the region’s vast solar radiation coverage. SolarX unlocks this opportunity by offering a one-stop shop solution for clean energy services – providing reliable and affordable energy which allows end-users to operate more efficiently in challenging environments. With this financing, SolarX will focus on developing and operating projects in Mali, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast.
Karim Ghammache, Founder & CEO of SolarX, said: “As energy generation in our target market comes from costly, difficult-to-get and volatile fossil fuels, most C&I clients are looking for cheaper, more reliable and cleaner energy. Despite the market demand, attracting financial partners had been a challenge before engaging with EAV. The EAV team has been instrumental in supporting us to set up the company, define the right business model, put together operational structures and develop connections with relevant partners prior to their investment. We are eager to lead the way in growing the renewable energy sector in West Africa.’’
Vladimir Dugin, Principal at EAV, said: “We are proud to continue to foster the development of C&I solar, investing in experienced local teams and innovative business models across underserved, frontier markets in Sub-Saharan Africa. With decades of combined operating experience in Mali, the SolarX team has the right expertise and execution capabilities to create a leading regional franchise with an appropriate and comprehensive C&I offering.”
Noorin Mawani, Investment Manager at CDC Group, said: “As a champion of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, CDC is committed to supporting innovative companies that are working to increase access to affordable and clean energy in Africa. SolarX is providing a much-needed solution for C&I companies and is well-positioned to ignite the renewable energy sector, which remains a critical pillar for development on the continent. We are excited to see the EAV team enter frontier markets and we’re pleased by their support of SolarX as they grow in Mali, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and beyond.”