Kenyan startup SolarFreeze, which provides solar-powered cold storage units for smallholder farmers and traders in Sub-Saharan Africa, will enter a three-month programme worth approximately US$50,000 in acceleration services and cash after winning the Africa Energy Prize.
The Africa Energy Prize was an initiative of the Enel Group, through its new division Enel X, and Swiss-based group Seedstars World, with SolarFreeze recognised as the best energy access startup on the continent at the end of the RES-EXPO conference in Nairobi.
SolarFreeze was selected for its solar-powered cold storage unit systems that provide refrigeration services to smallholder farmers and traders with no need for grid connection.
“We are glad to support a company promoting development in rural villages through innovative electrification solutions,” said Riccardo Amoroso, head of innovation and product lab at Enel X.
“During the selection process for the Africa Energy Prize, we have identified a number of startups bringing unique energy projects to the continent. These new business models, which couple socio-economic growth with the development of commercial and productive activities, are truly key to making Africa’s future greener and more sustainable.”
Alisee de Tonnac, chief executive officer (CEO) at Seedstars, said solving energy issues through entrepreneurship and technology was a critical agenda point at Seedstars, which aimed to find real solutions to real problems.
“Seedstars is glad to have Enel onboard to help support some of the greatest entrepreneurs, disruptors and innovators in this space,” she said.