Call for solar start-ups to apply for accelerator

Staff Writer
By Staff Writer, ITWeb
Johannesburg, 03 Nov 2023
The first Elevate cohort.
The first Elevate cohort.

Gogla, the global association for the off-grid solar energy industry, is calling for applications from African solar businesses, for the second cohort of its Elevate investor readiness programme.

According to a statement, Elevate aims to support active locally-owned and -managed companies in the off-grid solar sector to bridge the gap between African companies and international networks and financiers, and enhance their investor readiness.

It will offer a specialised suite of technical expertise that will accelerate the companies’ ability to reach rural homes and businesses with life-changing solar electricity.

Elevate forms part of the GET.invest Finance Readiness Support, a service of GET.invest, a European programme that mobilises investments in renewable energy supported by the European Union, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria.

“Off-grid solar provides the fastest and most affordable way to bring clean energy access to 55% of almost 600 million people still un-electrified in Sub-Saharan Africa,” notes Gogla.

“Yet, whilst energy access is a chronic challenge across the continent, African off-grid solar companies have a particularly hard time accessing the necessary funds to support their growth and their capability to serve their customers.

“Elevate provides access to tailored virtual training on strategy and measurement for growth product improvement, business and management operations, innovation and scaling.”

The 12-month programme also provides participants with access to curated tools, including an investor guide to better navigate the financing landscape, funding opportunities, and access to the Bridge Live webinars connecting off-grid solar industry leaders with peers and strategic advisors to help them thrive.

According to Gogla, the 20 companies selected for the first edition of Elevate had a presence across East, Central, South and West Africa, with strong female representation, and covered a range of technologies from solar home systems, to commercial, industrial and agricultural solutions.

Around 90% of participating companies consistently met their business targets since joining the programme, while 60% successfully generated a high potential pipeline of investors, and are highly likely to close investment deals, it says.

For more details on the eligibility criteria, visit the website. Apply for the Elevate programme here.

Applications close on 19 November.