Press Release: Sweden's Beyond the Grid Fund for Zambia Signs First Contracts with Energy Service Providers. The Goal: Modern Energy for One Million Zambians

Lusaka, Zambia - Sweden’s Ambassador to Zambia Henrik Cederin signed four contracts last Friday with companies offering a variety of rural energy solutions, marking the start of operations of the Power Africa: Beyond the Grid Fund for Zambia (BGFZ). The USD25m Fund, which is financed by the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida) and managed by the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), aims to bring modern energy to one million Zambians, and build a solid foundation for continuing growth of the market such that it can serve all Zambians.

The four private companies joining the BGFZ under the first round of financing represent a range of product offerings and approaches, although all are dedicated to making clean, modern and reliable energy affordable to every Zambian.

The group includes Zambia’s VITALITE and Emerging Cooking Solutions, who have been offering high quality solar-powered home energy systems, lighting and innovative stoves, and now intend to scale operations significantly. It also includes Ugandan-American firm Fenix Intl., which is teaming up with MTN Zambia to bring Uganda’s well-known ReadyPay Solar systems to the country. Standard Microgrid Zambia, a developer and operator of standalone solar microgrid systems that has been piloted in Zambia’s Southern Province, has also received financing from the BGFZ to support its plans to build 150 microgrid systems across the country. “We are tremendously excited to work with BGFZ to energize the sector, and are ready to hit the ground running,” said Standard Microgrid CEO Brian Somers.