April 26, 2017- The rural roll-out of scalable solar power in Kenya is set to accelerate with the announcement today of an innovative USD550k financing arrangement. Finance platform Lendable has secured USD550K debt financing for Raj Ushanga House (RUH), the Kenya distributor for Azuri Technologies Ltd, a leading provider of Pay-as-you-go (PayGo) solar energy solutions.
Using an innovative, data driven, “receivables financing” solution, capital is secured by future customer revenues from a high-quality portfolio of over 7,000 RUH PayGo solar customer contracts, and is the first such financing by Lendable for a PayGo energy company. Raju Haria, CEO of Raj Ushanga House says, “The debt financing from Lendable marks an exciting chapter for RUH. It enables us to reach more customers and finance their ownership of these assets. We will also be able to significantly expand the availability and variety of Azuri solar home systems in Kenya.”
Lendable has pioneered a technology platform, which uses a proprietary risk engine to analyze the quality of diversified receivable portfolios, and enables alternative lenders to secure debt financing from experienced offshore investors purely against these portfolio cashflows. A portion of the alternative lenders’ loan book is used as security meaning there is no need to put up other collateral that is required by traditional lenders in the form of tangible fixed assets. This approach to finance enables new energy providers to scale without the need for traditional on-balance-sheet collateral, while also permitting individual projects to be financed separately. Lendable has already secured USD.600,000.00 in debt financing for Tugende, a Ugandan company that offers a lease-to-own model to help Ugandan boda-boda drivers own their own motorcycle. Lendable is currently working on four transactions in Kenya and Uganda.
Daniel Goldfarb, CEO and co-founder Lendable commented: “We are excited to provide the investors on our platform with commercial returns while supporting positive economic and social change. We’re proud to support RUH’s mission to bring affordable and high quality solar energy solutions to more homes across Kenya. This is just the start of what we intend to be a long relationship with the RUH Team as we help them scale their lending exponentially through finance and technology.”
Lendable’s technology platform connects directly to the management information systems of the PayGo provider, including real-time financial information on the customer portfolio. This information allows Lendable to monitor performance of current transactions directly and, through Lendable’s investor portal, provide investors with up-to-date information on the performance of their investments.
Simon Bransfield-Garth, CEO of Azuri Technologies added, “We are delighted to be associated with Lendable’s first structured debt financing deal in renewable energy. Structured debt financing enables our distributors to accelerate the scale-up of PAYGO solar without tying up their balance sheets and we are excited about the potential of this alternative means of finance.”
Please contact Donald Ouma, +254 722 481 975.
Lendable is the first debt platform designed specifically for African alternative lenders – non-banking, asset backed finance providers operating in microfinance, and a range of Pay-as-you-go (PayGo) services including energy.
Lendable’s platform combines capital from experienced international debt investors from North America and Europe. They include family offices, alternative investment fund managers, high net worth individuals, impact funds and banks.
Lenders serve under-banked consumers with affordable asset-backed financing. There are a range of productive assets now being financed by PayGo – including motorbikes, welding equipment, water tanks and smart phones. This enables ownership of productive assets and access to credit. Lendable is able to reduce the time, resources and frictional costs incurred in closing a deal. It provides deal origination, due diligence, standardized documentation, customizable online pricing models, payments administration and post-deal reporting. The company’s proprietary platform helps investors and lenders have transparency across a range of deal variables – principal, yield, duration and a cap on forex risk.
Raj Ushanga House which has been in operation since 1980, has become one of the largest importers and distributors of decorative glass beads in Kenya. In 2013, they became a distributor of solar products and in the following year, partnered with Azuri Technologies to begin importing, distributing and financing Azuri solar home systems in Kenya. RUH are also expanding their product offering from smaller solar-home-systems to include a PayGo TV with bundled satellite content subscription, also from Azuri.
Azuri Technologies is a leading commercial provider of PayGo solar home systems to rural off- grid communities. With the widest reach of any provider in sub Saharan Africa, Azuri is leveraging solar and mobile technology to allow users in 12 different countries to access renewable, distributed power on a pay-as-you-go basis. Azuri’s HQ is located in Cambridge, United Kingdom, with staff based in Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Ethiopia, Nigeria and Tanzania.
Header photo: From Left to Right, Raju Haria: CEO, Raj Ushanga House, Daniel Goldfarb: CEO & co-founder, Lendable and Sharon Arungu-Olende: Head of East Arica, Lendable; present to Alice Nudko (center) an Azuri Solar Home System.