The Africa Solar and Energy Storage Congress (ASEC) was held on 27th and 28th June 2017 in Nairobi. This congress brought together a broad range of participants including governments, utilities, project developers, start-ups, investors, energy storage product manufacturers and consulting firms. This event aimed at discussing the opportunities, challenges and solutions for solar and energy storage development in the African market.
Ravinder Sikand made a presentation focusing on effective business models for developing renewable energy in Africa. Ravinder spoke about the historical context behind the access to energy, highlighting that in the West electrification was a ‘side effect’ of the investment into energy for industrial needs. Thus, investing in workplace energy is an important component in the development of rural electrification. Subsequently, Ravinder also explored different workplace and domestic energy access models touching on energy within the mining, manufacturing, retail, education, healthcare and agriculture industries.
Additionally, Emmanuel Beau sat as a panelist at this congress. As an investor, Emmanuel spoke about the funding landscape for energy access and the important role investors play in improving energy access. Emmanuel emphasized that innovative business models are crucial to gain funding in solar and energy storage projects.