New Portfolio Advances Women in Leadership

A new portfolio of 18 projects featuring women in leadership and gender inclusion have launched implementation in 2020. 

The new projects stem from a competitive call for proposals in 2019 aimed at advancing women in leadership in clean energy. EEP Africa received a total of 285 applications in that gender-themed call, over 60% of which were submitted by women-led companies. The high number of applications demonstrates the strong need for catalytic financing to support gender equality (SDG 5) in the clean energy sector.

``This newest cohort entering our portfolio is strong demonstration of the EEP Africa theory of change in all its many dimensions,” says EEP Africa Fund Manager Charles Wetherill. “We are expanding energy access; we are building green growth and climate resilience; we are catalysing early-stage startups; and we are investing actively and intentionally in the women founders and CEOs who are leading the clean energy transition in Africa.``

The 18 companies awarded financing encompass 8 different technologies and are being implemented in 10 countries, with a total financing commitment of almost EUR 6.5 million. Eleven of the companies are led by women. This new cohort of projects is projected to enhance energy access for 500,000 people, create 2,000 new jobs (65% for women), and reduce or avoid 160,000 tonnes of CO2e emissions per year. The projects plan to generate 40,000 MWh of clean energy per year and result in EUR 4 million in annual savings on energy-related expenditures.

The new projects join 27 projects already being implemented, resulting in an EEP Africa active portfolio of 45 projects. As an early-stage financing facility, 60% of the projects are in a pilot or demonstration stage of development and 52% of the project developers are start-up companies. The total financing commitment is EUR 20 million and over 80% of the projects are for off-grid energy.

Collectively, the portfolio reflects the extraordinary diversity of business models, technologies and social impact profiles visible in the clean energy revolution happening today across East and Southern Africa. EEP Africa is proud to support innovative projects that are catalyzing sustainable and inclusive green growth and contributing to achievement of the Paris Climate Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Download the EEP Africa New Portfolio 2020 booklet as a pdf.

Since 2010, EEP Africa has invested close to EUR 50 million in 250 pioneering projects. These projects have created 8,800 jobs, improved clean energy access for 5 million people, and reduced or avoided 1.5 million tonnes of CO2e emissions. EEP Africa is hosted by the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) with funding provided by Austria, Finland and NDF.


Photo credit: Solar Sister