Our vision: Be the first decentralized renewable energy supplier in Africa
With our solar containers - solar arrays, wind turbines combined with battery storage – we are building the first decentralized renewable energy supplier in Africa, lowering the dependency on Diesel fuel. We founded “Mobile Solarkraftwerke Afrika” to create a scalable business model to sell solar container in all of Africa. The solar containers are built by our partner in Germany, and sold via a rent-to-buy model. Our vision can be summarized in three sentences:
- Solar containers support economic development in Africa, and increase the standard of living
- Solar containers help to establish a green, sustainable and renewable energy supply
- Solar containers are profitable: They help growing the local economy, and deliver a return to investors in Germany and Africa
Who needs a solar container?
Many regions in Africa lack access to a region-wide electrical power grid. In Mali, for example, only 17% of the population is connected to the EDM (Energie du Mali) power grid, with a majority of those people living in the three big cities. On the other hand electricity is the key to economic development: Small shops, food storage, water pumps, schools and medical provisions. With access to affordable electric power people have a chance for a better life. AMADER "l’Agence malienne pour le développement de l’énergie domestique et de l’électrification rurale" has been trying to establish decentralized power grids in rural areas and villages with less than 25.000 people, using Diesel generators. We have reason to believe that 90% of these projects currently lose money, not able to deliver electricity at an affordable price point. This leads to negative outcomes for the local economy – e.g. more than 50% of the harvest rots on the field due to missing refrigerator facilities. Or investments in education, health care and water supply gets stalled for lack of electricity supply. When Diesel generators are available, they are noisy and expensive to operate, especially when fuel supply has to travel long distances. In addition to that, emissions from Diesel harm the environment.
Our solar containers offer a sustainable alternative: The energy source is renewable, and no fuel supply chain is needed. Power is generated emission-free. And the solar container can be easily embedded into the local economy, with local technicians and craftsmen becoming experts in renewable energy technology instead of fixing Diesel generators.<(p>
Building a fleet of distributed solar containers
We incorporated “Mobile Solarkraftwerke Afrika GmbH & Co KG” to create a scalable business model to finance solar containers. The corporation plans to scale the model beyond the first pilot installation in Mali, building ten more solar containers every year, to be sold as rent-to-buy installations at various locations in western Africa. This diversification of locations adds an additional security measure. Solar containers are mobile, and can be redeployed quickly in case of payment default in one particular location.
Our general manager, Charlie Njonmou
Charlie Njonmou is general manager and co-founder of “Mobile Solarkraftwerke Afrika GmbH & Co KG”. He is 34 year old, and earned his degree in Energy Management at the technical university of Darmstadt. Charlie also earned a bachelor in International Trade in Kamerun, and is trained as an IT specialist. Next to his national language, he speaks English, French and German fluently.
Prior to founding Mobile Solarkraftwerke Afrika Charlie – in cooperation with WSCAfrik – built a training facility to train technicians for solar power plants in Kamerun. The training center started operations, and currently offers training to 40 apprentices.