IFC and FMO to invest in Mobisol’s solar energy solutions in East Africa


World Bank Group member International Finance Corporation (IFC) has invested in German pay-as-you-go solar energy service company Mobisol in collaboration with Dutch development bank FMO.

The investment was made to provide solar energy solutions to off-grid communities in East Africa. It will help Mobisol expand its growth in existing markets in Rwanda and Tanzania, as well as support the company’s expansion plans into Kenya.

IFC has made equity investments of $5.76m and $9.77m from the AEF and MASSIF Dutch Government funds, which are managed by FMO.

With the financing, IFC and FMO join the partnership with Investec Asset Management’s African Private Equity Fund and DEG, which have already invested in the German company.

"This will eventually boost economic development, which fits FMO’s main inspiration to manage these funds on behalf of the Dutch Government."

FMO's chief investment officer Linda Broekhuizen said: “The funds made available through the Access to Energy Fund (AEF) and MASSIF will support sustainable energy solutions and steady access to energy for low-income households.

“This will eventually boost economic development, which fits FMO’s main inspiration to manage these funds on behalf of the Dutch Government.”

Mobisol has designed modular solar home systems for the African market, which provide clean, safe, and cheap alternatives to fossil fuels for low-income families.

The high-quality home systems are equipped to cater the electricity demands of an off-grid household, including powering lighting, radios, stereos, televisions, fridges, and other household appliances.

In addition, many small businesses are using Mobisol’s modular solar systems to generate incremental income by offering mobile phone charging services, running barber shops, or village cinemas.

Having installed more than 67,000 systems in Rwanda and Tanzania, Mobisol has benefitted over 330,000 consumers by providing them with access to electricity and the use of efficient appliances.

The IFC investment is a part of its Lighting Global programme initiated to boost the development of solar off-grid energy markets.