DFC to invest US$100m in private companies seeking financing for distributed renewable energy

AFRICA – U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) has announced a Call for Applications from private companies seeking financing for distributed renewable energy (DRE)-related investments.

DFC seeks to commit US$100 million in support for DRE-related investments in DFC-eligible countries within one year of launching this Call for Applications. Investments can be used for business expansion, working capital, and growth capital.

Special consideration will be given to projects that provide energy solutions related to the COVID-19 response, such as those projects that will provide needed electricity to healthcare facilities, and those that advance DFC’s 2X Women’s Initiative by promoting women’s economic empowerment.

“DFC is committed to combatting the climate crisis, and distributed renewable energy offers an important path forward to mitigate climate change and help bring electricity to hard to reach communities, supporting development and economic growth,” said DFC Chief Operating Officer David Marchick.

“The Call for Applications will allow us to identify private sector-led projects in need of financing tools to increase access to reliable and affordable electricity in developing countries around the world. We are excited to leverage our partnerships with The Rockefeller Foundation and Shell Foundation to advance this important work.”

“DRE investments offer electricity solutions that provide a higher level of service, expanding access to electricity and increasing economic growth.”

Raj Shah – President, The Rockefeller Foundation

The impacts from climate change, along with the health and economic impacts from COVID-19, could reverse the significant economic gains made in developing countries over the past several decades.

“DFC financing is a critical tool in the U.S. Government’s Power Africa toolbox,” said Power Africa Coordinator Mark Carrato, “and we’re excited that our Beyond the Grid team and other partners like the Shell Foundation can help generate potential deal flow from companies that traditionally have relied mostly on grants from donors, but that now are ready for financing. Our hope is to help shape the DRE market and demonstrate its commercial viability.”

DFC is utilizing its financing tools to facilitate increased private sector investment that addresses climate change and drives climate-focused investment in developing countries while reaching communities that lack sufficient access to sustainable and reliable electricity.

DFC will work collaboratively with The Rockefeller Foundation, the Shell Foundation, and the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Power Africa team on DRE projects supported through the Call for Applications.

“The Rockefeller Foundation is pleased to partner with DFC to take strong steps to support private sector-led climate solutions in developing countries, while we all work together to achieve the Paris Agreement’s emission reduction goals,” said Raj Shah, President of The Rockefeller Foundation.

“DRE investments offer electricity solutions that provide a higher level of service, expanding access to electricity and increasing economic growth.”

DRE investments bring energy to remote and rural locations that currently lack adequate energy access. DRE projects include but are not limited to micro and mini-grids, solar home systems, and distributed power generation.

DFC aims to expand electricity access to at least 10 million people by 2025, as included in its inaugural development strategy, the Roadmap for Impact.

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