Armed with $6 million in new debt financing, Husk Power Systems announced last week that it will begin electrifying 80 new communities in India with solar microgrids.
This new project will deliver reliable power to nearly 10,000 new customers and benefit about 60,000 people. The company already has roughly 150 community microgrid systems operating in India.
The company says the 80 microgrids will eliminate over 11,000 tons of carbon dioxide anually by replacing existing diesel generators with a renewable power source.
“We will be achieving a net zero, broad-based economic impact on businesses and households in rural India, and help micro, small and medium enterprises double their income through reduced energy costs,” said Manoj Sinha, co-founder and CEO of Husk Power,
Sinha spoke about the company’s microgrid work and what remote microgrids can teach us about the future of energy when he appeared at Microgrid 2022.
Financing is key
Minigrids — a term sometimes used for microgrids — like those to be installed by Husk are at the heart of EDFI ElectriFI’s strategy according to Corentin Billiet, ElectriFI senior investment officer at EDFI Management Company. Accordingly, the $6 million investment is one of the largest the EU-funded organization has made.
“We have been following Husk’s progress in the last years with attention and are very pleased to add this leading developer to our portfolio,” said Billiet.
According to Sinha, large amounts of long-term, low cost debt are necessary for companies to be able to scale microgrids profitably. “The EDFI ElectriFI debt will enable Husk to become EBITDA positive before the end of 2022,” he said.
Electrifying rural communities
Husk Power operates the largest fleet of solar-hybrid community microgrids in rural Asia and Africa, with completed projects up and running in India, Nigeria and Tanzania. Microgrid Knowledge recognized the company as one to watch in 2022 for their work in Nigeria’s Nasarawa State, where the company operates six solar hybrid microgrids that provide clean, reliable and affordable electricity to about 5,000 households and 500 businesses.
Earlier this year Husk Power Systems announced plans to build an additional 500 microgrids in Nigeria by 2026.
In addition to building microgrids, Husk helps business and residential customers to buy modern, efficient appliances at an affordable price.
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