The phrase “NEPA took the light” is something that you hear quite often in Nigeria. The acronym stands for the National Electric Power Authority, the former name for the company that keeps the power running in the country. Now, named the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, electricity cutting off sporadically continues to be an ongoing issue.
In 2014, Beacon Power Services (BPS) founder and chief executive officer Bimbola Adisa launched his company to help improve electricity access in not only Nigeria but across Africa, TechCrunch reports.
A report says that in 2020, 77 percent of Sub-Saharan African countries had no access to electricity, having to turn to alternatives like generators. After eight years invested in providing energy management software and analytics for utilities, BPS has recently raised $2.7 million, according to the outlet.
“Africa is home to the fastest growing cities in the world, but when most people think of energy access in Africa, they think of the rural areas with little or no access to electricity at all. However, it is impossible for Africa to develop without significantly improving electricity access and reliability across its major cities,” said CEO Adisa in a statement. “When we realized that solutions designed for mature markets fail to address the unique infrastructure challenges Africa faces, we developed a tailored solution for power companies on the continent to improve daily grid supply of electricity.”
The U.S. and Nigeria-based utility company’s seed round was led by Seedstars Africa Ventures. Among the participants were Persistent Energy, Kepple Africa Ventures, Factor[e], and Oridun Capital Management.
“As a society, we have recognized climate change as one of the biggest threats to our generation, and it is critical we use smart capital to support entrepreneurs across Africa who are creating innovative and localized solutions to tackle this challenge,” Maxime Bouan, managing partner at Seedstars Africa Ventures, said.
With the new funding, BPS aims to improve its current products and expand into new markets.