EU Provides USD 4.5 Million for Nigerian Mesh-Grid Service Provider

  • The EU has approved a USD 4.5 million working capital facility under the ElectriFI Country Window for Nigeria to provide access to electricity through the mesh-grid technology to mini-grids developers, targeting some 76 000 beneficiaries by the end of 2025. 

Launched in 2016, Okra Solar develops mesh-grid technology composed of their proprietary Okra Pod and sold together with PV panels, battery, and inverters to electrify underserved or unserved communities. The Okra Pod, an innovative device that enables the solar systems installed at each household to communicate and share power through a low voltage transmission cable (creating a so-called mesh-grid) is at the heart of Okra Solar’s value proposition.

One of the key building blocks of the mesh-grid is The Pod – Okra’s proprietary controller that regulates power distribution, remote monitoring, and mobile billing -which underpins and controls the mesh-grid’s decentralized design. Each Pod produces 1.2kW (AC or DC), which is sufficient to power essential appliances and boost network profitability. Through Okra’s upcoming “Grid Gateway,” excess electricity from commercial loads or neighbouring grids may be diverted into mesh-grids to help lower distribution costs. Image credit: Okra

The mesh-grid power-sharing function accommodates fluctuations in demand, boosts dependability, and lowers upfront expenditures. Meanwhile, isolated houses can operate independently until a neighbouring household is ready to connect and to exchange electricity. Mesh-grids are flexible enough to grow continuously as more households join a network and as demand increases.

The company is now focusing on the highly strategic Nigerian market. The ambition is to deploy multiple pilot projects and energize more than 30 000+ households in Nigeria in the next 2 to three years.

EDFI ElectriFI’s investment consists in a revolving working capital facility, designed to bridge the financing gap in the supply chain and help Okra leverage the high demand for their technology, penetrate the Nigerian market further and eventually speed up sustainable electrification.

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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