2018 was another important year for the various segments of the burgeoning off-grid industry. It was a year less about raising money than investing it to build the foundations of future growth.
The off-grid sector is going through an exciting period of expansion, partnership, innovation and learning and as long as investors continue to believe in the opportunity, the technology and the business models, the sector should prove resilient to bumps along the road. Most large solar home system companies now have established business models and product lines, which they are taking to new markets using tested methods of raising financing. Large equity raises in 2017 and early 2018 as well as the entry of huge European utilities into the market, notably Engie and EdF, provided funds for the consolidation of businesses and expansion into new markets outside of East Africa. Companies are also moving into the next phase of product development, looking at larger, more sophisticated systems able to manage power from multiple sources including the grid, small mini-grid systems and systems for small businesses.
This report collects African Energy newsletter's off-grid reporting and analysis for 2018 into a single downloadable report, providing a handy guide to a key year in what is an exciting period of expansion, partnership, innovation and learning.