News
SolarHome strengthens safety awareness in Bago region
SolarHome strengthens safety awareness in Bago region

Myanmar, February 2, 2017 - SolarHome has donated solar systems to Thinkari orphanage and school in Bago region as part of a community awareness program around the safety hazards of low-quality solar home systems.

The donation comes on the back of a recent fire accident which destroyed two buildings at the orphanage; a result of using low-quality solar-powered devices and home systems which had not been internationally certified.

Ole Samuilov, chief of product, SolarHome, said, “Solar home systems, particularly high-quality low- voltage systems pose less of a fire and safety hazard than other off-grid energy systems. We only install solar home systems verified by the World Bank’s Lighting Global Quality Standards. These standards ensure that our panels, batteries and devices are properly wired and connected before sold to the customer, thereby minimizing any fire and safety risks,” added Ole.

Lighting Global, a World Bank Group platform to support sustainable growth of the off-grid solar market, certifies the quality of solar products according to its Quality Standards.

“Lighting Global certified products undergo rigorous testing, including a safety assessment to ensure proper sizing and installation of wires. We strongly encourage individual solar energy users and companies to check that their systems are certified before purchasing,” said Bill Gallery, program manager at Lighting Global Myanmar.

To reduce the risk of fire and safety accidents, Solar home system users should:

  1. Protect the battery clams from humidity, dirt, kids and animals to avoid short circuits. Cover the place where the battery is wired to solar;
  2. Use controllers to prevent your battery from overcharging and overheating;
  3. Carefully calculate the size of wires needed to connect the panel to the battery and choose wires that correspond to the capacity of your panel; and
  4. Choose wires of a proven quality as the cheapest wires may not meet the system’s technical requirements.

Founded in 2012, the Thinkari orphanage and school supports the health and education needs of close to 310 children in Bago region. With SolarHome’s Lightning Global certified panels, the children are  now able to study safely throughout the day.

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About SolarHome

SolarHome (www.solar-home.asia) is the pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for off-grid households in Southeast Asia.  SolarHome installs integrated solar energy and appliance units in customers’ homes, and offers radically affordable “rent-to-own” plans of energy service subscription. This dramatically lowers the barriers to adoption of solar technology by the bottom-of-pyramid clients. SolarHome is delivering a significant social impact in its addressable market of 27 million households across Southeast Asia living outside of the electric grid. Headquartered in Singapore, SolarHome presently operates in Myanmar. SolarHome was seeded and developed by FORUM, the largest fintech venture builder in Emerging Asia. Last year, SolarHome brought light to more than 3000  households in rural Myanmar.

Media contacts:

Singapore

Keshia de Vries
PR Manager, FORUM
Mobile: +65 9479 2366; Email: kdevries@forum-cap.com

 

Yangon

Wit Yi Aung Communication Officer SolarHome Myanmar

Mobile: +95 9421083400; Email: wityi@solar-home.asia

 

 

SolarHome Reaches 1,000 Homes in Myanmar
SolarHome Reaches 1,000 Homes in Myanmar

Singapore, November 20, 2017 - SolarHome, the pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for off-grid households in Southeast Asia, has reached the milestone of 1,000 systems installed in rural Myanmar. Having recently closed a pre-Series A round of equity funding led by Uberis Capital and debt funding from Kiva, SolarHome has moved from pilot to industrial production mode, and is expanding rapidly.  In the last three months, SolarHome ramped up its installations run-rate from under 100 to over 500 systems per month. It now operates out of five hubs across Myanmar, with a field force of over 50 sales representatives and installers.

By bringing affordable renewable energy to rural families under a rent-to-own model, SolarHome is making a massive tangible impact on the life quality of bottom-of-pyramid customers in Myanmar.  SolarHome’s 1,000 installations equate to bringing renewables-powered lighting to 4,900 people.  This includes enabling 1,670 children to extend their study hours, 200 rural shop-owners to increase their earnings by keeping the store open after dark, and 120 fishermen to pursue productive night fishing by using the detachable electric torch provided with SolarHome’s systems.

Deputy CEO of SolarHome, Mila Bedrenets, commented: “Our traction in the last few months has been consistently exceeding our expectations.  The market’s capacity is enormous, with 27 million households living off-grid in Southeast Asia, spending an estimated $3 bln on legacy energy solutions. Our controlled distribution model and robust risk management have allowed us to ramp up rapidly while simultaneously improving utilization and default rates, as well as maintaining healthy product level profitability. In the next year, we plan to bring affordable renewable energy to over 40,000 households in Myanmar. We are excited about being able to achieve solid returns for our shareholders, as well as making a massive social impact.”

 

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About SolarHome

SolarHome (www.solar-home.asia) is the pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for off-grid households in Southeast Asia.  SolarHome installs integrated solar energy and appliance units in customers’ homes, and offers radically affordable “rent-to-own” plans of energy service subscription. This dramatically lowers the barriers to adoption of solar technology by the bottom-of-pyramid clients. SolarHome is delivering a significant social impact in its addressable market of 27 million households across Southeast Asia living outside of the electric grid. Headquartered in Singapore, SolarHome presently operates in Myanmar. SolarHome was seeded and developed by FORUM, the largest fintech venture builder in Emerging Asia.

For enquiries please contact:

 

Greg Krasnov, Chairman

SolarHome Pte. Ltd

111 North Bridge Road

#08-18 Peninsula Plaza

Singapore 179098

+65 8315 5349

gkrasnov@solar-home.asia

www.solar-home.asia

 

SolarHome Attracts First Debt Funding with the Support of IIX
SolarHome Attracts First Debt Funding with the Support of IIX

Singapore, October 27, 2017 - SolarHome, the pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for off-grid households in Southeast Asia, secured its first debt funding.  The new financing comes on the heels of the pre-Series A equity funding round that the company recently closed. Impact Investment Exchange (IIX), a global leader in impact investing, played a pivotal role in the securing of this financing by providing the company with impact assessment and technical assistance services as well as connecting SolarHome with its debt-provider Kiva, an online lending platform connecting lenders to entrepreneurs. This support was provided as part of the award-winning IIX Acceleration for Capacity-building and Technical Services (IIX ACTS) program in partnership with USAID.

The incremental funding will be used to support the rapid growth of SolarHome’s installed system base in Myanmar.  In the recent months, SolarHome ramped up its installations run-rate to over 150 systems per week.  It now operates out of four hubs in Pathein, Myaung Mya, Hinthada, and Pyapon across Myanmar with a captive field force of over 30 sales representatives and installers.  SolarHome has also become a member of the IFC Global Lighting Program as well as the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association (GOGLA).  SolarHome was seeded and developed by FORUM, the largest fintech venture builder in Emerging Asia.

CEO of SolarHome, Ted Martynov, commented: “The achievement of first debt funding is a major milestone for SolarHome.  As a pioneer of affordable clean energy for off-grid communities in Southeast Asia, we are dealing with an addressable market of 27 million households and over $3 bln of annual spend on legacy energy sources. We are honored to see that our high social impact business model continues to attract such high caliber investors and partners as IFC, USAID, Kiva, IIX, GOGLA.  We believe that this development serves as very important validation by the market of the strength of our international team and of our execution track record.  We look forward to putting this funding to work for the benefit of the off-grid communities in which we operate.”

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About SolarHome

SolarHome is the pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for off-grid households in Southeast Asia.  SolarHome installs integrated solar energy and appliance units in customers’ homes, and offers radically affordable “rent-to-own” plans of energy service subscription.  This dramatically lowers the barriers to adoption of solar technology by the bottom-of-pyramid clients.   SolarHome is delivering a significant social impact in its addressable market of 27 million households across Southeast Asia living outside of the electric grid.  Headquartered in Singapore, SolarHome presently operates in Myanmar.  SolarHome was seeded and developed by FORUM, the largest fintech venture builder in Emerging Asia.  

About IIX

Impact Investment Exchange (IIX) is a Singapore-based impact enterprise that builds pathways to connect backstreets of underserved communities to the Wall Streets of the world through impact investing. IIX investment platforms and innovative financial products enable impact enterprises to accelerate their business and scale their positive impact while pushing the impact investing space from the margins to the mainstream. IIX also operates Impact Partners, a private platform that connects Impact Investors with a select group of pre-screened Impact Enterprises seeking investment capital. To date, the work of IIX has spanned 20 countries and continues to expand with the mission of unlocking US$5.6 billion of impact investment capital, impacting 300 million lives by 2022.

About FORUM

FORUM (www.forum-cap.com) is the largest fintech venture builder in Emerging Asia, focused on the $500 bln growth opportunity in the Consumer Lending vertical.  We identify unique market segments for rapid value creation and build market-leading companies for capital gain. We are currently developing four companies across Asia: CredoLab, AsiaCollect, SolarHome and AsiaKredit.  FORUM is headquartered in Singapore.

 

 

Solar Pioneer SolarHome Secures $1.1 mln in Pre-Series A Funding
Solar Pioneer SolarHome Secures $1.1 mln in Pre-Series A Funding

Singapore, August 17, 2017 - SolarHome, the Southeast Asian pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for the off-grid bottom-of-pyramid population, closed an oversubscribed Pre-Series A equity funding round.  The round was led by Uberis Capital, the leading impact VC firm in Southeast Asia, and included participation from Beenext VC and other regional investors.  Forum Capital, Singapore-based venture builder, had previously provided seed funding.  This round brings the company’s total financing to-date to over $1.1 mln.  

 

The revolutionary PAYG Solar business model offers off-grid customers “rent-to-own” plans of energy service subscription, priced at a radically affordable level of $3-15 per month.  This dramatically lowers the barriers to adoption of Solar Home Systems for the bottom-of-pyramid clients.  The market opportunity is enormous, with over 150 million people living off-grid in Southeast Asia.

 

Managing Partner at Uberis Capital Nicolas de Boisgrollier commented:  “The PAYG model has emerged as a clear leader in off-grid electrification in Africa, India, and Latin America, having reached millions of homes and attracted over USD 500 million of investment over the last few years.  We see the same tailwinds in Southeast Asia – massive off-grid population, rise of alternative credit scoring and mobile money, and a growing acknowledgement by governments and DFI’s that distributed generation is the answer.  Unlike many other renewables businesses, PAYG is very scalable and operates profitably without subsidies, which makes this business model very attractive.  We were very impressed by the team’s expertise and achievements to date, and are excited to support SolarHome’s future development into a regional market leader.”

 

Chairman of SolarHome and Managing Director of Forum Capital Greg Krasnov commented:  “This is the third Forum Capital-built venture to close an oversubscribed funding round in the last few months.  SolarHome’s investment proposition lies at the intersection of a few highly exciting trends, such as financial inclusion, renewable energy, digitally-enabled lending, and Southeast Asian economic growth.   We are excited to partner with the lead investor Uberis Capital, who have vast experience supporting impact ventures around Southeast Asia.  We look forward to working with them on the Board to grow the company to the next level.”

 

Pioneered in East Africa, the PAYG approach has been remarkably successful in bringing clean and affordable energy to millions of off-grid customers in just a few years. SolarHome is the first company to successfully implement this business model in Southeast Asia, where over 150 million people still live off-grid.  The company has completed a pilot in Myanmar, and will use the additional funds to grow its installations to over 10,000 units in the next year.  SolarHome’s international team, led by CEO Ted Martynov, and strategically supported by Forum Capital, possesses world-class expertise and solid track record in inclusive consumer finance.  

 

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About SolarHome

 

SolarHome (www.solar-home.asia) is the Southeast Asian pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for the off-grid bottom-of-pyramid population.  Its revolutionary PAYG Solar business model offers off-grid customers “rent-to-own” plans of energy service subscription, priced at a radically affordable level of $3-15 per month.  This dramatically lowers the barriers to adoption of Solar Home Systems for the bottom-of-pyramid clients.  Pioneered in East Africa, the PAYG approach has been remarkably successful in bringing clean and affordable energy to millions of off-grid customers in just a few years. SolarHome is the first company to successfully implement this business model in Southeast Asia, where over 150 million people still live off-grid.  Headquartered in Singapore, SolarHome presently operates in Myanmar, with plans to expand across Southeast Asia and become one of the leading for-profit social enterprises in the region.  

 

 

 

Forum Capital (www.forum-cap.com) is a Venture Builder focused on inclusive fintech and consumer finance in Southeast Asia, headquartered in Singapore.   Forum Capital’s core business is identifying unique market opportunities for rapid value creation and building exciting new growth companies for capital gain.  Forum Capital’s ventures are built around specific high-potential macro trends, including Financial Inclusion, Emerging Southeast Asian Giants, Credit Risk Mitigation, and Digitally Enabled Lending.  The company’s principals have a track record of over $100 mln of capital gain for investors in emerging markets consumer finance.  Forum Capital’s portfolio includes CredoLab (www.credolab.com), SolarHome (www.solar-home.asia), AsiaCollect (www.asiacollect.com), and AsiaKredit (www.asiakredit.com).  

SolarHome is expanding its presence in Ayeyarwaddy
SolarHome is expanding its presence in Ayeyarwaddy

Yangon,25th September, 2017: SolarHome, the first driving force in clean energy services for rural areas in the SEA, is expanding its presence in Ayeyarwaddy region of Myanmar by opening two more operational hubs which would cover Hinthada, Myaung Mya, Einme, Kandgidaung, Ngapudow and several other townships.

As a result of the expansion about  570 000 off-grid households are covered by SolarHome operations and have an access to the affordable solar energy services.  

SolarHome believes that launching regional hubs is the way to deliver high-quality solar lighting solutions to off-grid households through the network of agents travelling to the remote villages and presenting the products. Targeted at the poorest households who cannot afford the high upfront cost of having the reliable solar lighting equipment, SolarHome offers affordable service plans ranging from 5,000 MMK to 12,000 MMK monthly payment. The company provides services including two-year warranty, free consultation, delivery, installation and other support to its customers, which is highly valued.

SolarHome is also proud of creating the job opportunities in one of the most economically depressed and suffering from the cyclone Nargis consequences and regular flooding area of Myanmar. More than 30 people among native Ayeyarwaddy citizens, who are already employed by SolarHome, have a decent income and the team is growing rapidly.   

There are around 500 SolarHome systems installed in Ayeyarwaddy region households so far and many more are yet to come in the nearest future. 

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About SolarHome

SolarHome (www.solar-home.asia) is a Southeast Asian pioneer in Pay-As-You-Go (“PAYG”) Solar for the off-grid poor sectors of the population. Its revolutionary PAYG Solar business model offers off-grid customers “rent-to-own” plans for energy service subscription at a radically affordable price ranging from 3$ to 15$ per month. This approach helps the poor bring down the barriers to Solar Home Systems ownership. Pioneered in East Africa, the PAYG approach has been remarkably successful in bringing clean and affordable energy to millions of off-grid customers in just a few years. SolarHome is the first company, which implemented this business model in Southeast Asia where over 150 million people still live off-grid, and did it successfully. Headquartered in Singapore, SolarHome currently operates in Myanmar, with plans to expand across Southeast Asia and become one of the leading for-profit social enterprises in the region.

 

Media contact person

Phoo Pyae Pyae Soe

Email: phoo@solar-home.asia

Phone: 09 455160638