Kenyan solar energy startup Pawame has raised US$1.7 million in grant capital and an additional US$750,000 in equity to fund its geographic expansion.
Launched in 2016 Pawame enables customers access solar home systems via a pay as you go (PAYG) subscription model. The startup also helps consumers obtain micro-loans via their mobile phones making it affordable to access clean and reliable energy.
Founded by Alexandre Allegue, Majd Chaaya and Nick Sparks, Pawame offers a portfolio of innovative, high-quality solar home systems in remote areas of Kenya on a micro-financed basis, using mobile money repayment. The business model also uses energy as a bridge to help families build a credit history and gain access to other products.
Pawame aims for geographic expansion within and beyond Kenya, with the series A fundraising set to further accelerate its growth trajectory. Its current investors are primarily GCC based, with its largest shareholder being senior executives from the largest power utility companies of the Middle East as well as Launch Africa VC.
Grants and funding were secured from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, and it will help accelerate and de-risk Pawame’s geographic expansion within Kenya. The Energy and Environment Partnership (EEP) grant will help accelerate the startup’s product pipeline, funding pilots for new products like solar water pumps and solar refrigerators. Additional grants were secured from AECF REACT Kenya and the World Bank-funded Kenya Off-Grid Solar Access Project (KOSAP).
Pawame has also raised an additional US$750,000 in equity funding, including US$250,000 from Launch Africa Fund. The startup will use the funds to fuel its geographical expansion and accelerate the development of new products. The startup has ambitions to become a pan-African company and to electrify over one million people in Sub-Saharan Africa by 2025.
The startup has also announced that it is launching a $5m series A funding round to further boost its growth and expansion into Africa.
Energy is just the beginning, supplanting dirty kerosene lamps, our solar products help protect as well as change the lives of off-grid families. The funds from our Series A equity round will allow Pawame accelerate its growth by delivering a broader array of life-changing products to more families in more of Kenya and, eventually, to other parts of Africa.