Solar Irrigation Highlights NDF Portfolio Synergies

New loan financing from Off-Grid Energy Access Fund builds on early stage support from EEP Africa and highlights synergies in the NDF clean energy portfolio.

The Facility for Energy Inclusion Off-Grid Energy Access Fund (FEI-OGEF) recently announced a new investment in SunCulture, a Kenya-based company specializing in solar pumping, irrigation and technology solutions for small holder farmers.

“This is the perfect illustration of NDF’s portfolio approach to climate finance,” said NDF Program Manager and EEP Africa Manager, Charles Wetherill. “We are making deliberate financing choices that yield powerful synergies in the marketplace. In this case, EEP Africa, NDF’s early stage clean energy financing vehicle, took the first step with grant financing in 2016 to enable SunCulture to develop its business case. Now FEI-OGEF, another strategic piece of the NDF climate finance portfolio, picks up the baton with working capital debt financing to enable scale-up and growth.”

SunCulture enables rural and small holder households, many of which are women-led, to make the switch from rainfall dependent agriculture to irrigation based agriculture. This brings improved productivity, expands the number of growing seasons and land under cultivation and can increase household income by as much as 5x – 10x.

FEI-OGEF is a blended finance off-grid energy investment fund established in 2018 by the African Development Bank and NDF together with partners including All-On, Calvert Impact Capital and the Global Environment Fund (GEF) and managed by Lions Head Global Partners.

More information on EEP Africa support to SunCulture is available here. More information can be found directly at the FEI-OGEF and SunCulture websites Photo credit: SunCulture