Powering rural entrepreneurs climbing energy ladder

Country Uganda
Location Various rural villages
Asset Solar Home Systems
Start 2022
Investment € 2.200.000

To accelerate rural electrification many donors focus on supplying large quantities of solar home systems against the lowest price. This results in the availability of plug-and-play systems suitable for lighting and phone charging. A great solution for rural households living of an income around one to two dollars a day.

These programs however do not provide a solution for entrepreneurs climbing the energy ladder requiring systems of a larger capacity and quality to power their business plans. Systems they require are often not available at the local market or against unaffordable startup costs.

An ambitious investment plan by FRES aims to provide a solution for these rural entrepreneurs By providing modular solar home systems, FRES can install tailored solar home systems with solar panels designed around the need of each entrepreneur.

The plan includes 500 systems affordable for entrepreneurs living of a daily income around 4 dollar a day, suitable for lighting multiple rooms and powering small appliances like a TV or even a small fridge. Ideal for rural shops or hospitality.

An additional 500 systems are reserved for enterprises requiring more capacity for refrigeration, for customer services such as hotels and video halls or for rural institutions like schools and clinics.

The investment covers the initial investment in equipment and installations. Customers pay a monthly service fee to cover services costs and reserve for replacement. This extends the lifetime of each system up to 15 years. As a result, the investment creates 1000 solar energy connections for less than € 150 per year.