CrossBoundary and ENGIE to Build US$60 Million Portfolio of Mini-Grids in Nigeria

  • CBEA, a leading project financier of mini-grids in Africa, has committed to invest in $60M of mini-grid projects developed by ENGIE Energy Access, a leading provider of energy access solutions in Africa.
  • Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy but more than 80 million people lack access to electricity.
  • This transaction will finance construction of a portfolio of mini-grids, connecting over 150,000 people to power for the first time.

CrossBoundary Energy Access Nigeria (CBEA) and ENGIE Energy Access Nigeria (ENGIE) have announced a project finance agreement to build a US$60 million portfolio of mini-grids that will connect over 150,000 people to electricity in Nigeria.

ENGIE has developed a pipeline of mini-grids to build over the next four years. CBEA will finance all of the development and construction activities and will own the projects. ENGIE will provide long-termoperations and maintain services for the mini-grids and ensure that the residential, commercial, and productive use customers receive clean, reliable electricity while delivering high-quality and customer centric services.

CBEA will provide the private capital for the transaction. CBEA will invest this private capital alongside the Performance Based Grant (PBG) funded by the World Bank and administered by Rural Electrification Agency (REA) and the Nigeria Electrification Project (NEP).

ENGIE, expanding on its energy access track record across Africa, sees huge value in the development of the mini-grid business in Nigeria. The agreement represents further progress in the African mini-grid space as it will expand access to energy to grid-unserved communities, creating economic growth and increasing socio-economic welfare in the community.

CBEA and ENGIE are excited that this innovative financing approach will provide electricity to more than 150,000 people in Nigeria and can be replicated across Africa.

Annette Mumbi, Associate Director at CrossBoundary Energy Access, says, “CBEA has improved our project financing approach for mini-grids to deploy capital faster and more efficiently by investing from procurement. These improvements enable developers to build mini-grids and deliver electricity to more people at a faster pace. Our agreement with ENGIE is one more milestone towards closing the gap on more than 600 million people in Africa who lack access to electricity.”

Gillian-Alexandre Huart, CEO, ENGIE Energy Access, says, “We’re excited to work in partnership with CrossBoundary Energy Access to finance this portfolio of mini-grids in Nigeria. This deal reflects our long-term commitment as a leading provider of energy access solutions in Africa. Most importantly, this agreement will connect marginalized rural populations in Nigeria with clean and affordable technologiesand facilitate more economic opportunities in these hard-to-serve areas. Promoting productive usages is key to growing resilient economic networks in these areas.”

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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