EEP Project of the Year Award topped off the Knowledge Exchange Forum in Kampala

More than 90 enthusiastic EEP project developers, investors and other professionals in the field of renewable energy and energy efficiency gathered on 11 October in Kampala to meet peers and exchange new ideas. The 6th EEP Knowledge Exchange Forum was built around inspiring presentations and discussions, encouraging participants to active networking and sharing of experiences. The intense day reached its climax with the announcement of the EEP Project of the Year 2017 Award winner.  

Private sector’s potential must be harnessed effectively


Esther Nyanzi from UNREEEA kicked off the day by speaking about their important mission to improve business environment for renewable energy and energy efficiency companies in Uganda and contribute to sustainable development. After that, the invited keynote speaker, Chairman of Simba Group Patrick Bitature gave a powerful speech about investments in renewable energy in Uganda. Mr. Bitature praised EEP as a true partnership and urged local companies to show their innovations and bravely search for funding opportunities. He also encouraged African and foreign companies to collaborate, in order to facilitate skills transfer. According to his words “Private sector should start with what they have got, fail, get up and start again. We cannot depend on donors forever”.

EEP Grant Manager Fred Eklund shared the current status of the project portfolio, highlighting the excellent results and the life-changing impacts the projects are achieving across sectors, countries and project types. Variety of the projects has proven to be one of the greatest strengths of EEP, making the programme stand out in the region. EEP Programme Director Wim Jonker Klunne continued with presenting hydropower projects in the EEP portfolio and the panel on hydro shared their thoughts about barriers and possibilities in the African hydropower sector.

Partnering and knowledge sharing throughout KEF

After the lunch GOGLA and EUEI PDF (sharing on RECP and ElectriFI) provided brochuresinteresting insights into supporting mechanisms for renewable energy projects and highlighted the need for early-stage funding through EEP as well as the added value in partnering and sharing information on funding opportunities.

In addition to several networking breaks, the round-table discussions offered the participants a chance to share their own experiences about innovations in the business model; challenges and lessons from product distribution; regulatory and policy framework; productive use of energy; and ideal team composition for reaching best results in energy projects. The participation in the round-tables was very active and room was full of discussion.

EEP Project of the Year Award 2017

For the fourth time since 2014, EEP selected the Project of the Year among the three shortlisted projects who were invited to give a presentation at the KEF. The competition was very tough as 15 successful project developers had submitted an application for the award. The Project of the Year title was finally awarded to the Kampala-based company Green Bio Energy. The winner convinced the EEP jury with the remarkable results that they have achieved with their energy-efficient cookstoves and eco-friendly briquettes.  Green Bio Energy has up to date affected the lives of 750,000 Ugandans, reduced 265,000 tons of CO2 emission and created permanent jobs for over 250 people. GBE’s annual growth in sales is forecast to be 25 %, and the company is poised to continue its expansion in Kampala and Mbale areas. Green Bio Energy hoped that this award would support them in achieving even better results and a greater impact.


This year’s winner GBE will be seen in the world’s leading startup event Slush Helsinki in November, where they will get a valuable opportunity to create contacts with international investors and mingle with other startup companies.

The other two great finalists were Absolute Energy with a solar PV mini-grid project electrifying a remote island of Kitobo in Lake Victoria, and BioLite whose innovative cookstove solution addresses multiple energy needs (ie. cooking, phone charging and lighting) simultaneously. All the finalists have shown great business potential, and we can be sure to hear more about them in the future.


Towards EEP Phase III

The last Knowledge Exchange Forum of the second phase of EEP was closed with the donors’ insights into the achievements of EEP Phase II and introduction to the future of the new EEP Multi-donor Trust Fund starting its operations in the beginning of 2018. The donors humbly thanked all project developers for their committed efforts in advancing the goals of EEP.

All presentations from KEF Kampala will be added soon.



REDAVIA Innovative Business Model – Rent the Solar Farm, Own the Future

EEP introduces another Innovative Business Model from the portfolio of EEP projects.

REDAVIA’s pre-configured, containerized solar mini-grids demonstrate the essence of an Innovative Business Model. The unique element in the business model is that REDAVIA rents the mini-grid and delivers 360° service including engineering, manufacturing, assembling, testing, deployment, maintenance and redeployment. The high-quality solar farm can be set up on average in four days and the communities and other customers save the high upfront investment required for a “traditional” mini-grid solution.

The Innovative Business Model illustrates the benefits of REDAVIA’s innovative system in two Tanzanian villages. The results of the system and provided electricity have been very tangible for the local communities and businesses including schools, hospitals and farmers. From a financial perspective, the rental model gives the villages significant flexibility to scale their solar energy capacity. By simply adding new containers of solar panels when the demand for electricity increases is a solution that enables faster uptake of the system.

REDAVIA is expanding its footprint in Tanzania and other parts of East and West Africa. The German-based company is poised to roll out enhanced solar technology with more intuitive features and begin scaling its mini-grid operation. REDAVIA maintains a close collaboration with each village by fully operating the mini-grid and also plans to create new job opportunities by transferring the control to the local villagers. REDAVIA is committed to using solar power as a key driver to sustainable social and economic impact.

REDAVIA Innovative Business Model >>

Read stories of other EEP Innovative Business Models >>

The latest EEP results demonstrating excellent progress in the renewably energy sector

EEP is proud to present the latest EEP M&E results by mid-2017 which show that EEP Programme continues on the right track with great performance.

The published EEP S&EA semi-annual M&E Programme report 2017 highlights positive progress in terms of reaching rural and urban beneficiaries with almost 800,000 households benefitting from improved energy access through EEP.

Some of the greatest results were achieved in reduction of CO2 emissions where the end of Programme target has been substantially exceeded. So far a reduction of 473,000 tonnes of CO2 has been achieved against the final target of 113,000 tonnes. The three best performers in CO2 reductions of the monitored projects during the first half of the year 2017 were Green Bio Energy in Uganda, GCS Tanzania and Sollatek Kenya.

Similarly, the amount of energy generated, 234,000 MWh/year by June 2017, has clearly exceeded the target of 81,000 MWh/year.

During the six-month period from January to June 2017 29 completed projects were monitored and evaluated, and their contribution has been included into the cumulative Programme results. With 132 projects monitored and 62 still in implementation, EEP has by June 2017 already exceeded 16 of the 22 end-of-the-programme targets of December 2017.

See more results in the EEP semi-annual M&E Programme report 2017, which includes an updated overview of the EEP portfolio. In 2017, EEP continued to interact as an active regional partner engaged in different RE/EE initiatives and provide technical support to project developers.  In the M&E report you can also find highlights of EEP activities in Business Development Support, Knowledge Management and Research.

Invitation to 6th EEP Knowledge Exchange Forum in Kampala, Uganda

The EEP S&EA will be hosting its 6th Knowledge Exchange Forum (KEF) on the 11th of October 2017 at Protea Hotel Kampala, Uganda. You are warmly welcome to join the KEF to hear about the recent developments of renewable energy sector in Uganda and East Africa.

The EEP Knowledge Exchange Forum organised since 2014 has been an active event of discussions, sharing of experiences and a place to network with players in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sector. The feedback from the previous KEFs has enabled us to develop a highly appreciated event specifically tailored for the needs of EEP project developers. Based on its core idea of networking, the KEF offers ample opportunity to learn and build new business relationships.

The day will be built around a combination of interesting presentations and casual networking. Programme’s highlights include private sector perspectives on investing in renewable energy shared by Patrick Bitature, founder and chairman of the Simba Group of Companies. In addition, the KEF will discuss and introduce various support mechanisms for project developers. The status of EEP Phase III will be shared during the KEF. Towards the afternoon the participants are encouraged to share their successes and challenges in round-table discussions.

The day will reach a finale in the awarding of EEP Project of the Year 2017 so please apply for the prestigious nomination here >>. Three shortlisted projects will be invited to pitch their projects during the KEF and the lucky winner will gain an opportunity to participate in the world’s leading startup event Slush Helsinki.

See the KEF agenda here >>

The agenda is preliminary and subject to change. The final programme of the day will be updated on the EEP website.

Register latest on 30 September >> 

Please note, that participation in the event is open for all and free of charge but a registration is compulsory. There is a limited number of seats so make sure to reserve your place soon!

We sincerely hope you will be able to join us in KEF Kampala and look forward to meet you there. Welcome! 


Nordic Climate Facility to launch a new CfP in August 2017

Nordic Climate Facility (NCF) is a challenge fund providing grant support for innovative climate change projects in developing countries. NCF’s seventh Call for Proposals, open from 28 August to 29 September 2017, carries a theme of Climate as Business—Testing innovative green business concepts with a focus on climate-related business ideas with potential to become commercially viable. NCF is fully financed by the Nordic Development Fund (NDF), a joint development financing institution of the five Nordic countries, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

The eligible projects should be implemented through partnerships between local organizations in one of the Nordic countries and in one of the 21 NCF countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America. African countries included are Benin, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

More information about the requirements and the application process as well as descriptions of the 72 previously funded projects can be found on the NCF website.

EEP project developers are strongly encouraged to create new partnerships and apply for NCF funding to test their green business concepts.

Renewable Energy Market Landscape Study highlights the unique value and need of EEP’s flexible early-stage funding in Southern and East Africa

As part of preparations for EEP Phase III the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), and the UK Department for International Development (DFID) in association with the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) have commissioned and published a market landscape study on renewable energy, covering the current 13 EEP S&EA countries as well as Malawi and Zimbabwe. The report highlight’s EEP’s unique value in a combination of flexibility, much needed early stage financing, knowledge exchange and investor networking.

The study reviews the current status of energy access in the EEP S&EA region and analyses the sector’s challenges and opportunities related to institutional framework, technology and stakeholders, particularly reflecting on the needs of private sector actors in the off-grid markets. The report reveals that there is a great need for mechanisms such as EEP due to the substantial funding gap for mini-grid and off-grid technologies as well as for clean cooking technology. To support this, a clear message from the EEP project developers is that the greatest obstacle they face is access to finance.

Fast growth rates of solar market particularly in East Africa demonstrate that major opportunities in renewable energy business exist. In terms of different sectors and technologies, the potential of biogas and small-scale wind farms is particularly highlighted in the report. The report also calls for more serious recognition of energy efficiency issues and upscaling of quality cookstove manufacturing in order to effectively improve the access to clean cooking.

The importance of introducing renewable sources in the energy mix is commonly acknowledged as the rural electrification rates across Africa remain very low. However, the sparse population with limited purchase power causes reluctance from companies with market-based approach to expand to rural areas and anchor loads or subsidies to households are needed until the critical mass is reached.

Please find here the three components of the study: Volume I) Full Report of the Market Landscape StudyVolume II) Country Profiles and Stakeholder Maps for the 15 Southern and East African countries included in the study; and Volume III) Energy Sector Donor Mapping. Feel free to distribute this report with your relevant contacts and please share your thoughts about these topics on our social media channels.

Save the date for next KEF in Uganda and apply for EEP Project of the Year 2017 Award

The 6th EEP Knowledge Exchange Forum will take place in Kampala, Uganda on the 11th of October. Winner of the EEP Project of the Year Award will get an opportunity to participate in the world’s leading startup event Slush, Helsinki.

All project developers and other actors in the renewable energy sector are invited to join the 6th KEF event in Kampala. More information on the venue and detailed agenda will be published soon.

EEP Project of the Year 2017 will be selected and announced during KEF Uganda. Since 2014 ECO has nominated one outstanding project as the EEP Project of the Year.  Previously, the EEP Project of the Year title has been awarded to DevergyEco-Fuel Africa and iSmart Kenya.  Application for this year’s award is now open and three shortlisted finalists will be invited to present their projects at KEF Uganda where the winner will be announced.

The Project of the Year 2017 will be awarded an exclusive opportunity to join Slush Helsinki! EEP will fund travel, accommodation and associated costs for one representative of the winning project to participate in the world’s leading startup event.

If you are EEP project developer with excellent performance and interested in showcasing your innovation to the top global audience, including a full range of investors, take part of the EEP Project of the Year 2017 competition. Read the instructions in the invitation, fill out the application form and submit it by 15 September.

What is Slush?

Slush is a unique start-up event founded in Helsinki that has grown to be the leading one in Europe and spread globally to Tokyo, Shanghai and Singapore. The very core of Slush is to facilitate founder and investor meetings, and to build a world-wide startup community with extraordinary energy and enthusiasm. Slush has remained a student-driven, non-profit movement that aims high at bringing together the leading actors of the global tech startup scene and change attitudes toward entrepreneurship.

In 2016 Slush Helsinki attracted 17,500 people including 2,300 startups, 1,100 investors and 600 media representatives from over 120 countries. Emerging markets are also present at Slush as every year a group of impact-driven startup entrepreneurs from emerging countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America is selected through local pitching competitions to participate in a boot camp with Slush Global Impact Accelerator.

Read more about the Slush phenomenon and get ready to apply for the EEP Project of the Year award!