Sun Exchange, the Cape Town-based buy-to-lease solar cell marketplace, has announced it’s raising R7 million (approx. US $460,000) for approximately 5.2% equity stake in the company via crowdfunding site Uprise.Africa.
According to Abraham Cambridge, CEO and Founder, Sun Exchange, “We’re thrilled to partner with Uprise.Africa to create an opportunity for anyone to invest in Sun Exchange, own part of one of the most disruptive companies across the African continent, and benefit from our continued growth and success.”
The crowdfunding campaign is open to anyone over the age of 18, anywhere in the world to help the firm transition the world away from harmful fossil fuels by promoting accessible and affordable solar power for all.
Some of Sun Exchange,s investors include Boost VC, Alphabit, Techstars, as well as numerous individual U.S. and E.U. investors.
Funds raised through the Uprise.Africa campaign will accelerate the company towards its next stage of growth, including elevating its marketing efforts to grow by 10X over the next two years, scaling to new markets in Africa, and Eastern Europe, South America and Central Asia.
The firm will also use the funds to build out its technology team to further develop its platform into an interactive and gamified solar cell ownership dashboard with rewards and referral programmes and establishing a larger, permanent office in Cape Town, along with taking on new staff to grow the sales, business development and marketing teams.
“Decentralisation, democratisation, and profits with purpose are core values for Sun Exchange. We believe in the power of the crowd and people’s ability to unite to create lasting positive social and environmental impacts, while also earning solid financial returns. This equity crowdfunding campaign epitomises those values,” added Cambridge.
Launched in 2015, Sun Exchange, has built a community of more than 8,000 Sun Exchange members across approximately 140 countries and brought solar power to 13 South African schools, businesses and organisations, offsetting 1,500 tonnes of carbon per year, and growing.
The firm believes that this new phase gives its customers, solar cell purchasers, off-takers and other supporters an opportunity to deepen their support of the company’s mission to bring solar power to millions of homes and offices globally.
“Sun Exchange is an African success story on the fast-track to revolutionising energy and finance and we are delighted to be part of that journey,” said Patrick Schofield, Co-founder, Uprise.Africa. “Uprise.Africa supports organisations that demonstrate it’s possible to run a successful business while creating significant positive social and environmental impacts,”
The firm says these equity crowdfunding campaign is part of a $3 million (approx. R45 million) seed funding round, of which it has raised approximately $800,000 (approx. R12 million) to date from global investors, including US $500,000 (approx. R7.6 million) from the multi-million dollar hedge fund, Alphabit Fund. The minimum investment to partake in the Uprise.Africa crowdfunding campaign is R3,000 (approx. US $198).