Home Startups Senegalese energy startup Oolu to scale in Burkina Faso via BGFA contract.

Senegalese energy startup Oolu to scale in Burkina Faso via BGFA contract.

by Weddy Thuranira
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Oolu Burkina Faso has signed an agreement  with the Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa (BGFA) to support the  scale up of  high-quality solar home systems for people living in rural areas of Burkina Faso.

For residential, commercial, and institutional customers in Burkina Faso, Oolu will provide energy solutions and services, including various solar home systems and large standalone systems.

These solutions help customers in remote places cut greenhouse gas emissions, decrease indoor air pollution, and improve power supply reliability. The contract is for EUR 2.5 million in total, with a project budget of at least EUR 5 million.

Oolu has been developing solar home systems for the African market since 2015 and the company is active across six West African countries. The Burkina Faso subsidiary was established in 2018 and was the first company in the country selling PAYGO-based renewable energy services.

With the support of BGFA, Oolu will scale up its current business activities in Burkina Faso, aiming to establish over 28,000 additional subscriptions over a four-year period by providing solar home systems for lighting, mobile phone charging, TVs, fridges and freezers as well as power sources for commercial customers.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with BGFA to further scale up our business activities. In recent years, many communities in Burkina Faso have endured worsening economic, security and climate conditions. With the support from BGFA, we can improve people’s lives in these underserved communities by providing modern and renewable energy access at affordable rates, often for the very first time,” said Dan Rosa, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer at Oolu.

“This first BGFA contract reinforces Sweden’s commitment to Burkina Faso and the importance of supporting the development of the country’s energy sector. Burkina Faso is beset by security problems and is experiencing difficult times. Over 60% of its young and dynamic population does not have access to electricity. The private sector plays an important role in helping the country achieve its ambitions, particularly with regard to access to sustainable energy. Mobilising financing through innovative mechanisms such as BGFA, will help to scale up affordable and sustainable energy solutions in the country,” commented Maria Sargren, Ambassador to Sweden in Burkina Faso.

Oolu will expand its operations across eight regions where it is already operating: le Centre, la Boucle du Mouhoun, les Cascades, les Hauts Bassins, le Sud Ouest, le Centre Est, le Centre Ouest and l’Est, as well as commence operations in four additional regions.

 It is estimated that the project will help to bring clean off-grid energy solutions and lighting equipment to over 28,000 households and over 560 businesses and institutions. In the long term this will enable a higher standard of education and create numerous new employment opportunities in the country. “We are very pleased to announce our first project in Burkina Faso, which will support access to clean energy solutions in several regions across Burkina Faso and is estimated to benefit over 155,000 people,” commented Dennis Hamro-Drotz, Senior Programme Manager at Nefco.

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