Lumos secures FMO funding to power clean energy revolution in West Africa
Lumos, Africa’s solar home system provider, has received new funding from Dutch entrepreneurial development bank, FMO, to expand its existing market for reliable, accessible and clean solar power in Côte d’Ivoire.
The new funding will enable Lumos to produce tens of thousands of solar home systems (SHS) to grow its existing customer base and meet fast-growing demand from homes and businesses across the country, where approximately 9 million people live without access to the grid . It is estimated that 200,000 people will benefit from access to energy through Lumos’ SHS, which will more than double Lumos’ existing customer base in the country .
Lumos’ solar technology will enable people to switch from dangerous, expensive kerosene lanterns to reliable, clean energy, contributing to economic growth and sustainable development in the West African country.
Solar home systems offer a unique power solution to a global market of more than two billion people. Currently, there are 740 million people with poor or no access to the electricity grid in Sub-Saharan Africa .. Lumos is revolutionising and decentralising power supply in the region in the same way that transitioning from landlines to mobile phones revolutionised communications.
Renee Comoe Seka, CEO, Lumos Côte d’Ivoire commented: “Access to reliable energy is critical for economic growth. The new funding from FMO will enable hundreds of thousands of people to benefit from reliable, sustainable and affordable energy. FMO is a pioneering institution and shares our commitment to harness the market demand and lift people out of poverty. Our joint ambition is to provide power for everyone.”
Huub Cornelissen, Director Energy at FMO commented: “Lumos offers a unique solution for millions of people living with no access to the electricity grid. We support companies, like Lumos, that power developing economies, promote the transition to a low-carbon system and achieve prosperity at scale. Lumos delivers on all three goals and their next phase of growth in Côte d’Ivoire will bring immeasurable benefits to local people in the hardest to reach communities.”
Lumos is the market leader in the solar home system sector in Nigeria, with market shares over 50%, and is rapidly growing in Côte d’Ivoire, on top of the tens of thousands of customers it already has across the country.
The Lumos system is easy and accessible to use. Customers pay an initial deposit followed by affordable monthly payments. Customers use the solar home systems to power lights, cell phones, fans, computers, TVs and other small electronic devices. After five years, the customer owns the SHS and can continue to use solar energy for free. Lumos’ unique business model and strategic partnership with MTN allows customers to pay with MTN’s airtime as well with Mobile Money.