Off Grid Electric, a solar leasing company that provides home solar electric systems to consumers in rural and urban Tanzania via a mobile payment platform, says there are more people off grid now than when it started the venture and aims to reach 200,000 households in the East African nation by the end of 2015.
Last week, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) announced new financing to help expand the company’s reach in Africa. Off Grid Electric also received $16 million from America’s biggest solar company, SolarCity. Venture firms Vulcan Capital and Omidyar Network have also invested in the Tanzanian-based solar company.
“My typical customer lives on $1-$4 a day per household. They are typically burning kerosene, which is jet fuel for light rather electricity. They may have to walk for miles to charge their phones, leave it with someone the whole day, come back at night and get it and have to pay for that privilege,” Xavier Helgesen, Off Grid Electric co-founder, told Bloomberg TV.