A NIGERIAN SOLAR STARTUP RENSOURCE RAISES $20M TO POWER AFRICAN LOCAL MARKETS
An off-grid Nigerian-based startup Rensource raises $20M in a bid to enable the company to power the world’s continent that is faced with the slowest electrification. However, the off-grid energy startup raised the funds in a Series A round jointly led by African venture capital fund, CRE Venture Capital, the Omidyar network, and impact investor. The funding round also witnessed the participation of Sin Capital, Inspired Evolution, Yuzura Honda, EDPR, and not excluding EDPR.
Rensource is a renewable energy company that develops and operates solar-powered micro-utilities that provide energy to commercial community structures, such as open-air local trading sectors.
Prior to Rensource funding round, a different renewable company ‘Arnergy’ in June, raised $9 million in a Series A round according to reports. However, Rensource raising $20M implies a sustained investor interest in Africa-focused renewable energy startups poised to bridge electricity provision and supply gaps.
Rensource which solely focus on powering merchant shops and local markets was launched in 2016, meanwhile, the founder and CEO in his response to this development made it clear that: “We decided that the better way to scale the market opportunity is by focusing on small business, specifically merchants in large urban markets in Nigeria”.
Amazingly, the company currently partners with German manufacturing company – BOSAG, with whom the designed panels are gotten. While on the other hand, the startup also has a team of developers in Nigeria and Europe precisely for its software related programs. As the startup focuses on offering B2B services, the company’s motive has been viewed as a way of becoming a micro-energy provider to the country’s SME classes.
Rensource seeks to bring to Nigeria’s SMEs, lower overhead costs via a better business practice that is beneficial to the company and in the process, free this sector from the grip of generators. But more troublesome is the noisy, fuel-consuming, and carbon emission from these generators, yet inevitable across West African marketplaces.
With Rensource raising $20M to curb the scourge this sector is currently faced with, it’s understood Nigeria, like many other African countries – open-air markets are key drivers of economic activity in urban and local communities which goes on to the national economy. Based on this, one could see the reason why Rensource is positioning itself as a micro-utility for large market spaces, with its installation service financed to billing local markets and merchants while providing customer service in seven (7) open-air markets across Africa most populous and economic country.
Based on the analysis, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) 2019 Nigeria report quoted economic losses of $29 billion as a result of poor electricity supply, and as such, is ranked terribly low in getting electricity. This problem is an issue of concern as it has a great effect on the country and the continent’s SMEs.
Moving from there, the company plans to expand to 100 markets within Nigeria coupled with other African countries before 2022, according to the founder and CEO.
- What is your take as Rensource raises $20M?