Currently, 600 million Sub-Saharan Africans do not have access to electricity. These same people have no credit histories and do not have access to financial services. Pawame solves both of these challenges. The company electrifies off-grid homes with clean, modern solar home systems, and it uses a proprietary machine-learning-based algorithm to analyse repayment data in order to accurately assess a customer’s credit-worthiness.
“Pawame aspires to an electrified Africa, where energy is just the beginning. We focus on delivering value to the customer, starting with a high-quality solar home system. Then, we work with customers to build a credit history, harnessing the power of data to unlock access to a range of life-enhancing products, which can transform communities,” says Alexandre Allegue, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pawame.
The Sub-Saharan home solar market is one characterized by overwhelming opportunity. In 2017, The IEA estimated that more than half of the billion people globally without power will be brought online with home systems and mini-grids by 2030. In Sub-Saharan Africa, only about 2% of all off-grid households have been reached with home solar systems, and once these communities are connected to the electrical grid, there is a world of further product possibilities that open up.
The industry has seen over $875+m in direct and indirect investments, and 31 joint ventures have been formed to support solar home system development and proliferation. This has pushed the industry to a real precipice, but investment has been concentrated in just a few large players.
“More investment is needed to really push home solar over the edge, but new financing needs to be reserved for agile, new players, like Pawame, who seek disruption and creativity outside the scope of the solar home system model, which has now existed in relative stagnation for nearly ten years,” Allegue explains. “Pawame is well-positioned to disrupt the industry by offering more customer value and by leveraging innovative technologies to deliver their solutions.”
Pawame will need additional funds to be used for the following:
- Attract and retain top talent to complete their world-class team
- Pilot new and innovative products
- Further invest in portfolio management and data analytics capabilities as a source of competitive advantage.
- Launch retail locations.
- Finance burn rate until achievement of cash flow break-even in 2019
“In five years, we hope to be a pan-African company and to have changed millions of lives. We will offer a range of development-amplifying products like smartphones, refrigerators, and more. Now, we’re piloting our school loan program and plan to offer more transformative microloans. By using disruptive technologies for last mile delivery and leap-frogging traditional development, we intend to connect even the most remote households and to be a part of future-building on the African continent,” says Allegue.
Pawame has already raised $825,139 (82% of their $1,000,00 target) from 29 investors so far.
Their funding round on Eureeca is set to close on 11th September 2019.