Lumos unlocks DFC financing of $35 million to deliver power to one million people

September 17, 2020

Lumos is delighted to announce that the company has secured $35 million in new financing from the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC). The financing will enable Lumos to deploy 160,000 new solar home systems, which will be used to power households and small businesses across Nigeria.

With more than 160 million people in Nigeria living with poor or no access to the electricity grid, the DFC financing will help us to reach new customers and seize the country’s enormous potential to rapidly scale up solar energy. 

Clean, reliable and affordable energy is an essential pillar of economic growth and sustainable development. Lumos’ growth in Nigeria will help to narrow the country’s electricity gap and enhance the abilities for people and communities to prosper.

Alistair Gordon, Group CEO, Lumos, commented: “This funding from DFC will enable people throughout Nigeria to seize the opportunities that come with access to reliable and affordable power. Access to energy is the foundation for a high quality of life, good healthcare, education and increased income. Our ultimate goal at Lumos is to provide power for everyone.”

Investing in solar to unlock Africa’s potential for growth  

The US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) is known as America’s development bank, financing solutions to the biggest challenges the world is facing, and sub-Saharan Africa has been identified as a region which has a huge need for investment to improve living standards and deliver a prosperous economy.  

People in Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil-exporting country, are faced with daily power cuts and, to make up the shortfall, many supply their own electricity through diesel generators which cause negative impacts on public health, the environment and personal finance.

With Nigeria set to be become the world’s second most populous country after India by the end of the century, the inability of the electricity grid to serve increasing population and support the COVID-19 recovery means that investors and solar companies are seizing the opportunity to expand and empower millions with clean, affordable and reliable energy access.

Worku Gachou, Managing Director for Africa, at DFC said: “Access to power is a fundamental need across Africa and is even more urgent as COVID-19 continues to impact communities across the continent. Supporting Lumos will empower one million people across Nigeria by delivering access to reliable and affordable energy. Together, we can help unlock Africa’s enormous potential for growth.”

Shmulik Kollender, Group COO & CFO Lumos, said: “We thank DFC for its continued support of our vision and approach. Our longstanding partnership with DFC had already allowed Lumos to command a market leading position in the largest off-grid market in Sub-Saharan Africa. DFC financing is even more important these days. In light of the impact that COVID-19 has on our customers there is a real need for impact-oriented investors that can share our vision to eliminate energy-poverty in the country”.

This DFC funding announcement follows the recent funding from Dutch entrepreneurial development bank FMO, which was announced in August. The FMO funding will more than double Lumos’ customer base in Côte d’Ivoire. Both of these financing projects help Lumos solidify its position as the solar home system market leader in West Africa and power prosperity through the delivery of reliable, accessible and clean solar energy.