The forum, organised by Climate Technology Initiative’s Private Financing Advisory Network (CTI PFAN), aimed to bridge the gap between clean energy project developers and investors and was held in Johannesburg in September.
Businesses, including Barefoot Power, showcased projects with an investment value of US$110 million covering biomass, hydropower, solar, wind and bio-fuels initiatives from across Africa.
Barefoot Power’s project manufacturing and distributing solar charged LED lights and electrical products to poor communities in Kenya and Uganda caught the judges’ attention. With plans to expand this project across Africa, founder Stewart Craine said this win was invaluable.
“Being part of the CTI PFAN forum process has not only helped Barefoot Power refine and focus on its business plan for investors, but the company’s selection as one of the winners, and the recognition we will receive as a result, makes the company more attractive to investors,” Mr Craine said.
“We are currently looking for more investors, especially Australian investors, as most of our funding currently comes from overseas,” he added.
CTI PFAN selects the most economic and environmentally beneficial projects and guides the developers before presenting the projects to investors.
Barefoot Power shared this success with Greenewus Energy Africa’s Ugandan 8 MW Kakaka mini hydropower project. The two runners up were a Ghanaian soil project and South African bio-diesel and biomass projects. These four projects represent a reduction of 120,000 tonnes of CO2 per annum.
CTI PFAN is a public and private partnership focusing on innovative clean and renewable energy projects by bringing together private sector companies with climate-friendly project developers. In the past few years CTI PFAN has leveraged $150 million of investment into clean energy companies.
The Africa Forum was sponsored by the Climate Technology Initiative (CTI), the Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the International Center for Environmental Technology Transfer (ICETT) of Japan.
Only weeks ago Barefoot Power was named one of 14 winners in the G-20 SME Finance Challenge and earlier this year won three awards in the World Bank’s Lighting Africa program.
“These wins will help significantly with our current Series B round of equity capital raising. We are now looking for more investors, especially Australian investors, as most of our funding currently comes from overseas,” he added.
The company also secured a €1 million grant from the European Union via EuropeAid this year and was named in the 2010 and 2009 Australian Anthill Smart 100 Awards.
Barefoot Power has also recently been featured on the Sky News Business Social Business show, in conjunction with the Centre for Social Impact, and appeared on ABC’s New Inventors program in July.
The European Union, Ashoka, G-20, CTI PFAN and the Centre for Social Impact are valued supporters of Barefoot Power.
For more information visit www.barefootpower.com