M-KOPA Solar Secures in Commercial Debt Funding

M-KOPA Solar, a pay-as-you-go energy provider to off-grid homes, has secured $80 million of committed financing. The company will utilize the funds over the next three years to provide finance for pay-as-you-go solar installations in one million homes.

The local lenders include, Stanbic Bank, CDC, FMO, and Norfund. According to a M-KOPA release, Stanbic Bank is leading a $55 million local currency equivalent debt facility and has committed $9 million; CDC committed $20 million; and FMO and Norfund committed $13 million each.

The debt facility of $55 million is in Kenya shillings and Uganda shillings and will be backed by customer receivables paid over mobile money payment plans. It is the largest commercial debt facility to date in the pay-as-you-go off-grid energy sector.

“Stanbic’s team was innovative and flexible in its approach, which allowed the lenders to provide a large line of credit for our receivables. This record-breaking facility is being deployed primarily into off-grid households, with per capita income of less than US$2 per day. Over the past year, Stanbic and M-KOPA have worked collaboratively to design a facility that reliably funds M-KOPA’s growth in local currency, while providing considerable safeguards for the lending syndicate,” said Mr. Chad Larson, Chief Credit Officer and Co-Founder, M-KOPA Solar.

“We are excited to partner M-KOPA. Off-grid solutions are set to become a much bigger source of supply – as technology and funding mechanisms become more accessible. Through this innovative debt financing solution, which is the largest of its kind, the company is able to fund the next wave of pay-as-you-go installations across East Africa. We are proud to be a part of this landmark transaction and the positive impact it will have on lives and communities,” said Mr. Stephen Lovell, Head: Corporate Financing Solutions – East Africa, Stanbic.

“Our equity and debt investments are aimed at helping the company build on its success and reach many more of the 600 million people across Africa who currently live without electricity,” said Mr. Nick O’Donohoe, Chief Executive Officer, CDC.

M-KOPA has also secured $25 million in debt from responsAbility, Symbiotics, and Triodos Investment Management. According to Mercom’s Solar Funding Tracker, M-Kopa has raised approximately $150 million to date in VC and Debt Financing.

Mercom’s recently released Q3 2017 Solar Funding and M&A Report tracks over $26 million raised in the quarter by companies providing off-grid electric solutions and pay-as-you-go solutions through solar.

Image credit: M-Kopa Solar