Odyssey Energy Solutions, a global platform that connects project developers, small-scale power grid developers (mini-grids) and investors, announced it has already registered 550 projects. To enable small businesses with these projects to develop them, the overall financing requirement is now approaching $500 million.
Access to electricity remains a problem in Africa. This is the case, for example, in Nigeria, the most populous country on the continent with 186 million inhabitants. Currently, only 30% of the population has access to energy and the government plans to reach 75% by 2025; but for the moment, the electricity production distributed by the national network is largely insufficient. To achieve the objectives, it is therefore necessary to bet on off-grid. Moreover, the World Bank estimates that it will take up to 200,000 mini-grids to significantly increase access to electricity worldwide.
Odyssey Energy Solutions is a platform that was created to facilitate the development of mini-grid projects. It proposes an investment of 500 million dollars to implement 550 small-scale electricity projects in several African countries in particular. These are solar photovoltaic, hydroelectric and biomass projects.
The 550 projects registered on the platform come from 21 countries in Asia, South America and Africa, including Cameroon, Cape Verde, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Haiti, India, India, Kenya, Lesotho, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, Philippines, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The costs of these projects range from $40,000 to $3 million. Odyssey Energy Solutions’ work now consists in connecting these project leaders with potential investors or government institutions.
“Odyssey proves how quickly the mini-grid industry is taking off around the world. Using software and data analysis to streamline and standardise the development and funding of mini-network projects. We are able to consolidate projects into bankable portfolios that meet investor requirements, paving the way for additional capital into the sector,” the platform explained in a release.
Odyssey Energy Solutions has received financial support for its establishment from several institutions including Shell Foundation, Factor Ventures, Doen Foundation, USAID Power Africa and the UK Department for International Development (DFID). This broad support is bearing fruit, especially since the platform’s users now include a network of over 100 developers, investors, suppliers and government institutions, with monthly growth of 30 to 40%, according to Odyssey.
Jean Marie Takouleu