Our solar shop and technician network is solving the last-mile distribution and servicing challenge in rural Uganda.

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The Problem


Barriers to solar adoption, according to rural Ugandans:

0%
Cited Distance
0%
Cited Product Quality
0%
Cited Lack of Financing
0%
Cited Lack of Servicing Options

Source: Commissioned research survey in Bugiri & Kaliro Districts, July-August 2016.

Our Solution


Access

Network of retail shops located in rural trading centers, offering a range of products and services.


Affordability

Pay-As-You-Go solar products and partnerships with local micro-savings groups provide consumer financing options.

Trust

Locally-recruited shop managers and technicians with the training and support to be the solar experts for their community.

What We Offer

Solar Solutions

  • For Home

    Solar lanterns and home systems that can power lights, TVs, radios, and/or fridges. Our brands include D.Light & Greenlight Planet, as well as custom-sized systems.

  • For Business

    Custom installations on payment plans that allow businesses to cut costs and boost income. We offer solutions for small/medium businesses and larger institutions alike.

Solar Servicing

  • Maintenance & Servicing

    We include at least two years of on-site maintenance visits in all of our installations, as well as offer servicing & repairs of anything from solar lanterns up to micro-grids.

  • Parts & Components

    We also offer replacement components for existing products and installations, including panels, batteries, charge controllers, and inverters.

Solar
Training

  • Solar Technical

    In-village trainings for young men and women in rural communities to equip them with the knowledge & skills necessary to enter the solar industry as technicians.

  • Business Skills

    In-village trainings in market-ready business skills to enable young men and women to be the “local solar experts” in their communities. Skills taught include sales, marketing, & operations.

Our Value

SOLAR SOLUTIONS


  • Connector.

    Solution Crafting

    In-depth advice on the right solution for a client’s particular energy need.

  • Connector.

    Customer Financing

    Offered through partnerships with local SACCOs, PayGo Solar Companies and other financial institutions.

  • Connector.

    Productive Use of Energy

    Working with our clients to allow them to boost productivity or generate additional income using solar energy.

SOLAR SERVICING


  • Connector.

    Preventative Maintenance

    User education and 2 years of maintenance visits for installations.

  • Connector.

    On-Site Servicing

    Fast servicing and replacements without the need for the customer to travel outside the area.

  • Connector.

    Relationship Building

    Being in the community allows us to build long-term personal relationships with our clients to understand their ongoing challenges, needs, and opportunities.

SOLAR TRAINING


  • Connector.

    In-Village Training

    Our ability to conduct trainings in rural areas increases access for rural men and women.

  • Connector.

    3rd-Party Certification

    Trainees receive testing and technical certification from the Centre for Research in Energy & Energy Conservation.

  • Connector.

    Connection to Jobs

    Graduates have the opportunity to join our network or boost their employability with other organizations/projects.

Our Results


Technical
0
Trainees
Female
0%
Field Staff
Clients
0
In 2016
Installations
0
In 2016

Who We Are

We started in 2010 with the goal of bringing energy access to rural communities by employing Ugandan youth to locally manufacture and distribute solar systems, eventually selling and installing over 4,000 systems. Through our work in rural areas, we saw for ourselves how the lack of after-sales servicing options was creating a lack of trust of solar in rural areas, and that the entire last-mile distribution challenge was a large, unsolved opportunity. This has led to our current “community solar expert” model, focused on developing the human capital and physical infrastructure needed for a sustainable rural solar economy.

AbuA native Ugandan and former Ashoka East Africa program manager, Abu co-founded Village Energy in 2010. Originally focused on manufacturing and distributing solar systems, he pivoted to this new model in late 2014, for which he has been selected as an Ashoka fellow and Echoing Green fellow. Abu is an Acumen East Africa and Unreasonable Institute alumnus, and a graduate of Makerere University.

Contact: abu@villageenergy.com

JayJay Patel, Vice President: Jay joined Village Energy after five years at Google on the Small & Medium Business team. He has extensive experience in sales, marketing and operations, and plays a leading role in partnerships, fundraising, and business model development. Jay is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.

Contact: jay@villageenergy.com.

Joshua headshotJoshua leads our sales and marketing activities. Prior to joining Village Energy, he spent 8 years at SolarNow growing through the ranks from Dealer to Franchisee to Branch Manager to Regional Sales Manager. In the latter role he managed market penetration, sales processes, and training sales teams. Joshua is a graduate of Makerere University.

Contact: joshua@villageenergy.com

ania-headshotAnia is an education  specialist with prior experience in international development work with United Nations Development Programme and education NGOs. She oversees the establishment and implementation of Village Energy Academy, including curriculum development, assessment, enrollment, program monitoring, and ongoing management. Ania received her MA in International Affairs from Columbia University.

Contact: ania@villageenergy.com

peppe-headshotGiuseppe leads our installation business line and co-leads trainings. He holds a BS in Energy Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Nuclear Engineering from Politecnico di Milano, where he was also a Technology Transfer Manager.

Contact: giuseppe@villageenergy.com

SammySamuel joined Village Energy in 2013 as an in-house technician with experience in both off-grid and on-grid installations. He is also our lead technical trainer, and handles procurement/testing of solar components. Samuel is a graduate of Makerere University with a B.S. in Physics and Certificate in Solar Technology.

Contact: sammy@villageenergy.com

PeterA native Ugandan with 10 years of experience in investment banking, non-profit program management and operations. As a native speaker of the local language of Eastern Uganda (Ateso), he oversees field operations, including recruitment, training, shop setup/launch, and ongoing management. Peter is a graduate of Makerere University.

Contact: peter@villageenergy.com

liz-headshot

Elizabeth runs the company’s internal financial processes and accounts. She has experience in finance management, sales, community mobilization and training, office management and customer care. Elizabeth is a graduate of Kyambogo University.

Contact: elizabeth@villageenergy.com

Awards & Partners



Development Innovation Ventures

2016 Grantee

Village Energy

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2014 Program

2014 Venture

Village Energy

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Ashoka Fellowship

2015

2014 Fellow

Abu Musuuza

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SPRING Accelerator

2015 Cohort

Village Energy

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Climate Fellowship

2015

2015 Fellow

Abu Musuuza

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Acumen Fellowship

East Africa Fellow

Abu Musuuza

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SEED Awards

2015 Africa Winner

Village Energy

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Powering the Future

2015

2015 Finalist

Village Energy

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PDCI 2016

Prototype Model

Village Energy

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Get in Touch



We operate in all regions of Uganda. For your household, business or community solar needs, email joshua@villageenergy.com or contact one of our offices below.
For project developers, micro-grid operators, or other proposal work, email peppe@villageenergy.com.
For more information on our technical or business trainings for your business, organization or project, email ania@villageenergy.com.
For more information on partnerships or investment opportunities, email jay@villageenergy.com.
We are always looking for super talented people to join our team as roles come up. Please email your CV and an email statement expressing why you are interested in us to careers@villageenergy.com.

Kampala HQ



Address 7A Market Rise, off Namuwongo Road

Mail PO Box 95361

Phone +256 757347064/ +256 771027068

Email: support@villageenergy.com


Soroti Hub



Address Liverpool Rd, off Market Rd

Phone +256 757347064/ +256 771027068

Pallisa Hub



Address  Gogonyo Road, Plot 5

Phone +256 757 329 372

Sub-County Locations




Agule
Butebo
Kasodo

Arapai
Kamuda
Katine

Atutur
Kamuge
Tubur

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