NEoT Offgrid Africa (NOA) is investing in mini-grid projects in Uganda and Sierra Leone through a new investment platform, Winch Energy IPP Holdings Limited (WIPP) whom NOA is the main shareholder, contributing to its ambition to build the largest portfolio of mini-grids in Sub-Saharan Africa.
For this project, which represents a total commitment of US$16 million in partnership with Winch Energy, WIPP plans to equip 49 villages in Sierra Leone and Uganda with containerized and remotely controllable solar solutions – Remote Power Unit (RPU) – that will supply power to nearly 60,000 people. In a second phase, 6,000 portable batteries will be deployed in these villages to equip people who live too far from the RPU. At the same time, partnerships with telecom operators will be established to guarantee Internet access for households. In the medium term, WIPP plans to expand its operations to other countries, in order to reach a portfolio worth US$100 million.
Within WIPP, NOA will be both the main equity investor and responsible for financial structuring while Winch Energy will focus on the deployment of clean energy supply solutions. For this investment platform, NOA intends to both raise equity and debt. Several international donors have already committed to finance this project, including the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) in Sierra Leone and the German International Cooperation Agency (GIZ) and the European Union (EU) in Uganda. NOA is also in talks with two international financial institutions for a debt contribution to the project. The SunFunder fund will also provide a construction loan of US$2 million. On the legal side for this deal, NOA was supported by the French law firm August Debouzy.
NEoT Offgrid Africa, a major player in African offgrid
NEoT Offgrid Africa – a platform established by Meridiam, EDF and Mitsubishi Corporation – supports and accelerates Africa’s energy transition and already invested more than 30 million euros in the electrification of 25,000 homes and businesses in Ivory Coast and Nigeria.
NOA’s ambition is to multiply investment projects with the best technological and operational partners in the off-grid energy sector in order to build the largest mini-grid portfolio in sub-Saharan Africa in the coming years.
“NEoT Offgrid Africa is very proud to participate in this ambitious project alongside Winch Energy,” said Frederic Pfister, NOA’s Managing Director. “This transaction reinforces NOA’s position as a leading provider of innovative financing in the renewable energy sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, which has huge potential and an equally huge need for financing.”
About NEoT Offgrid Africa
NEoT Offgrid Africa (NOA) is an investment platform designed to support Africa’s energy transition by addressing the issues of energy access. Founded and owned by Meridiam (as majority shareholder), EDF and Mitsubishi Corporation, NOA provides its partners with innovative financing solutions to remove barriers to upstream investment, deployment of new technologies and commercial risk management.
NOA is managed by NEoT Capital, which brings together a team experienced in financial structuring and clean energy solutions, and relies on international strategic partners to provide the financial and operational support needed to develop a carbon-free world.
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