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Azuri raises $5m to support renewable energy in sub-Saharan Africa

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Azuri Technologies Ltd. has raised $5m financing in debt from Standard Chartered Bank to support renewable energy in sub-Saharan Africa.

The loan facility will enable the manufacture of Azuri’s PayGo solar home systems for deployment in sub-Saharan Africa, where 600 million people live without access to a reliable power grid.

According to Simon Bransfield-Garth, Chief Executive of Azuri: “As the PayGo industry matures, access to innovative debt finance mechanisms becomes an increasingly important part of being able to deliver continued market growth. We are delighted to have partnered with Standard Chartered Bank to deliver this innovative facility.

Access to debt finance is increasingly seen as a key enabler of the market’s continuing growth. This is the first facility of its type to date for the growing off-grid solar market, allowing stock of manufactured product to be built before being transferred to Azuri’s distribution partners in country. As such it eliminates the need for working capital to be tied up in stock prior to product shipping to partners.

The system allows users to pay for solar power on a pay-as-you-go basis, simply using their mobile phones.

Sean Hanafin, Head of Corporate Coverage, UK & European Sectors at Standard Chartered said: “This facility is aligned with our ‘Banking the Ecosystem’ strategy, deploying innovative solutions to finance clients’ ecosystems of international suppliers, distributors and customers, driving global trade and commerce.”

The revolving fund will support sustainable renewable energy access in sub-Saharan African countries and will help Azuri to leverage new and existing opportunities to accelerate its growth. Since 2011, the company has sold some 90,000 solar home systems, reaching approximately half a million people.

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