This seminar showcased examples of innovative approaches within and beyond Winrock to financing energy products and systems, ranging from small solar lanterns or household cookstoves to larger community-wide mini-grid systems. Speakers included:
Javier Betancourt, Chief of Party for Winrock’s USAID-funded Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Project (REEEP) in Nigeria (2013 – 2018). Javier spoke about the REEEP project’s use of crowdsource financing to fund community-level mini-grid systems in Nigeria.
Bikash Pandey, Innovations Lead and Director of Winrock’s Clean Energy Unit. Bikash spoke about Winrock’s work developing partnerships for financing of solar pumps and solar chillers.
Katie Gross, Program Officer in Winrock’s Clean Energy Unit specializing in household energy, most recently serving as Project Director for Winrock’s USAID-funded Developing a Sustainable Cookstove Sector (DSCS) Project (2012 – 2017). She presented on Winrock’s partnership with the Kenya Union of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (KUSCCO) to develop a long-term financing channel for Kenyan SACCOs to purchase clean energy products for on-lending to their members.
Nicola Armacost, Managing Director of Arc Finance, which promotes and expands access to financing for energy, water and other basic needs to build the income and assets of poor people around the world. Niki described Arc’s efforts working with MFIs in non-traditional ways, including supporting diversification of energy product offerings by graduating from financing pico to larger scale energy systems, developing ESCOs, and providing finance for energy entrepreneurs.