Access names winners of $5mn Africa renewable fund
Solar projects from Cameroon and Nigeria emerge victorious from 55 entries.
Access Infra Africa (Access), a Dubai-based developer, owner and operator of power assets in Africa, has chosen Quaint Solar Energy from Nigeria and Flatbush Solar from Cameroon as the winners of the inaugural $5mn Access Co-Development Fund (ACF).
Quaint Solar Energy’s winning ABIBA Solar Project is a 50 MW solar development that will utilise photovoltaic (PV) technology. The project aims to add to Nigeria’s current power output and help to bridge the power deficit faced by the nation.
The winning Maroua Solar Project by Flatbush Solar in Cameroon is a 20 MW solar fixed ground mount photovoltaic plant, designed to serve the energy needs of the city of Maroua and neighbouring towns and villages.
Access launched the competition in April to bridge the gap between early-stage African renewable energy projects and the expertise and funding they require to become operational.
Other shortlisted projects included a 20 MW photovoltaic plant by Ada Solar Energy in Ghana and a 10 MW solar plant by Wagonanze Investments in Tanzania.
The winning projects were selected by an expert panel at a live session at the Africa Energy Forum 2015, based on commercial, technical and environmental merits, the local regulatory environment, and the project team.
Reda El Chaar, chairman of Access Power MEA, said: “I would like to thank our expert panel for their time and industry-specific insights which were instrumental in the selection of Flatbush Solar and Quaint Solar Energy as the winners of the inaugural ACF.
“It is a fantastic opportunity to be able to partner with two projects that will undoubtedly have a positive social and economic impact in their respective regions, and we look forward to working closely with them as they progress towards becoming operational.”
He added: “The ACF was extremely successful in its first year, receiving over 55 submissions in less than two months; a remarkable feat which in many ways reflects the potential of renewable energy across Africa. I am confident that the competition will gain more momentum in the years to come.”
Seun Solesi, director at Quaint Solar Energy, said: “We are delighted to partner with Access Infra Africa to develop the ABIBA Solar project in Nigeria. Their funding, technical support and guidance will undoubtedly play a key role in bringing the project to fruition and creating significant benefit for all our stakeholders.”
Samuel Tesfaye, Managing Director of Flatbush Solar, said: “Through this win, the Maroua Solar Project will be able to boost electricity supply to Maroua and its neighboring villages in Cameroon.
"We are pleased that Access Infra Africa recognizes the importance of providing funding and technical expertise to early-stage projects within the renewable energy sector in Africa.”
Flatbush Solar and Quaint Solar Energy will enter into a Joint Development Agreement with Access. Under this agreement,
Access will take an equity stake in the winning projects and fund third party development costs such as feasibility studies, grid studies, environmental and social impact assessments and other due diligence fees.
Access will also back Flatbush Solar and Quaint Solar Energy with technical support, financial structure and development process management.