M-KOPA Solar connects 50,000 Ugandan homes to PAYG solar

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Pay-as-you-go solar company M-KOPA Solar has announced it has connected 50,000 off-grid homes in Uganda, as it continues to scale its coverage and scope.

M-KOPA Solar raised a total of US$31.45 million in funding last year – making it one of the best-funded startups in Africa, according to Disrupt Africa’s African Tech Startups Funding Report 2015.

In February, the company launched its first solar-powered digital flat-screen TV, while it is still focusing on increasing its coverage of households in East Africa.

“We are proud to have reached 50,000 homes in Uganda with 25,000 coming in, in the past twelve months. We are seeing the off-grid solar market gaining huge traction as Ugandans realise they don’t have to wait for the grid to access affordable power,” Anthony Weremaka, M-KOPA Solar general manager said.

The M-KOPA 4 solar home system comes with an 8W solar panel, two upgradeable LED bulbs, phone charging, USB with five ports, rechargeable torch and radio, alongside 24/7 customer support and a two-year warranty. The company offers an annual mobile payment plan.

The company estimates that 5.5 million homes in Uganda are off-grid, with most of these still relying on kerosene for lighting. Fumes from kerosene create adverse health effects, with respiratory infections being one of the prevalent illnesses in the country.

“We are proud to be eradicating the use of tadooba amongst these households. By providing them with clean energy, we are enabling them to save and invest in their health, education and income generating opportunities,” Weremaka said.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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