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Solar Startup Nuru Raises $40million in Series B Round to Address Significant Energy Gap

Solar Startup Nuru Raises $40million in Series B Round to Address Significant Energy Gap

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)-based startup Nuru, has raised $40 million in a series B round, to address the significant energy gap in the country.

The series B round was led by The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP), the Renewable Energy Performance Platform (REPP), Proparco, E3 Capital, Voltalia, the Schmidt Family Foundation, GAIA Impact fund, and the Joseph Family Foundation.

With less than 20% of the population having access to energy, Nuru intends to use the funds to provide a 24-hour power supply for five million people in the country. To achieve this, the company will build three mini-grids in parts of Eastern DRC- Goma, Kindu, and Bunia, with a combined capacity of 13.7 megawatts.

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Speaking on the funds raised, co-founder and CEO of Nuru Jonathan Shaw said, “Closing the Series B is a significant milestone in Nuru’s journey, but also demonstrates the viability of the metro grid model in the distributed energy sector in Africa. Nuru extends its heartfelt appreciation to the consortium of investors for their visionary support and unwavering commitment to Nuru’s vision. Together, we will continue to illuminate lives, drive economic growth, and empower communities across the DRC”.

Also commenting on the funds raised, the lead investor in the round, The International Finance Corporation (IFC) country manager Malick Fall said,

“Expanding access to electricity is instrumental to supporting economic growth and improving living standards for people and businesses in the DRC. IFC’s support for Nuru will play a pivotal role in helping to bridge the energy access gap by using an innovative business model, new technology, and more climate-friendly power sources”.

While the IFC’s equity investment also includes financing from the Finland-IFC Blended Finance for Climate Program, the company hopes to close off an additional $28 million in project finance by the end of July.

Nuru’s utility-scale solar mini-grids are designed to provide 24/7 reliable and renewable energy to the communities they are installed. This will help improve climate resilience and sustainable development, which the country desperately needs.

Anticipated outcomes of the Project include the provision of affordable and dependable electricity to approximately 28,000 households and businesses. These beneficiaries currently face challenges related to costly, unreliable, unsustainable, or non-existent access to electricity.

The Project also presents opportunities for commercial and industrial entities, such as telecom tower operators, water pumping stations, substations, agri-processing and milling companies, national banks, and water bottling factories, to become potential off-takers of the generated power.

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