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Access Power-FMO Bank Announce Short-List for ‘Solar Shark Tank’ Developing Market Renewable Energy Competition



Access Power, developer, owner and operator of power projects in emerging markets, and FMO, the Dutch development bank, are delighted to announce a shortlist of four companies selected to pitch for financial support for the development of solar projects. The final pitches will be delivered at the ‘Solar Shark Tank’ event at the Making Solar Bankable conference in Amsterdam on the 18th February

This high pressure Dragon’s Den style event will see competing developers from emerging markets deliver five minute presentations, followed by question and answer sessions, to an expert panel of judges in front of a live audience. The winner of the Shark Tank Competition will receive a $100,000 grant towards the development of the project from Access Power and FMO. In addition, the winning project shall be pre-qualified for the Access Co-Development Facility (ACF2016), a competition for renewable energy projects to secure a mix of expertise and funding from a set aside pool of $7million, for the development of their renewable energy project located in an emerging market.

The four projects shortlisted for the ‘Solar Shark Tank’ competition include: AGES PLC in Sierra Leone, Canopy Energy in Burkina Faso, KVK Energy in Nigeria, and Symbior Energy in Mongolia.

Reda El Chaar, Executive Chairman, Access Power commented, “The response to this competition has been considerable and we have been impressed and encouraged by the calibre of the applications received. In the search for exemplar projects to support, the Pre-selection committee has considered a range of bold and innovative proposals, many of which clearly demonstrate the ability to harness the development potential of renewable energy. Through this competition, we hope to encourage innovation and support companies in their efforts to deliver power to places that desperately need it.”

Entrants must be:

  • projects between 5MW and 50MW in size
  • a solar power generation project in an emerging market in Asia, Africa or Latin America
  • at a relatively advanced stage of development
  • have pre-feasibility studies completed

Access Power will also pre-qualify the winning project for the Access Co-Development Facility (ACF) if it is being developed in Africa. The Access Co-development Facility (ACF) is a financial support mechanism designed to serve as a unique platform to bridge the gap between local power project developers/originators and the technical experience/funding required to bring such projects to life. Following a very successful inaugural deployment, the ACF has increased its funding pot from $5m in 2015 to $7m this year.

Mark Melis, CFA Investment Officer, Private Equity at FMO said: “With entrepreneurship at the heart of our ethos, we would like to congratulate the four shortlisted companies for reaching the final stage of this unique competition.  This prize is a major opportunity for a local developer to benefit from the support and experience of Access Power and FMO.  We are pleased to offer financial provision and encouragement to businesses in emerging markets with the aim of supporting sustainable private sector development”.