Following federal government’s opening of the power sector to private investors, Engie Energy Access Nigeria, has unveiled a strategic investment initiative that will see a phased deployment of Mini Grid power stations across underserved rural communities around Nigeria.
Engie Energy Access Nigeria, which was formally known as Fenix International, a leader in Nigeria’s pay-as-you-go (PAYGo) solar industry announced a projected portfolio investment budget of N40 billion by the year 2025.
Speaking to our correspondent on the sidelines of the firms name change from Fenix to Engie Energy Access, in Lagos, Mr. Bankole Cardoso, said is currently operating in eleven states of the federation and has completed a Mini Grid plant in Niger state.
Cardoso, country lead of Engie, told LEADERSHIP that the firm is projecting to spend between N50 million to N200 million on each of the grid assets.
According to him, the firm would be completing 300 of such projects by 2025 in Nigeria and deploy a targeted number of 1,000 plants across Africa.
He said ENGIE, is the world’s largest independent electricity producer while Fenix International started operations in Nigeria back in 2018 as part of ENGIE’s ambition to expand its footprint in Africa.
The name change is a result of ENGIE integrating Fenix International with ENGIE Mobisol, another solar home systems company; and mini-grids provider, ENGIE PowerCorner under one entity and one name – ENGIE Energy Access, he explained.
This integration puts ENGIE Energy Access Nigeria in a unique position as the only energy player offering end to end off-grid energy solutions with both solar home systems and mini-grids under one roof.
At the event, Cardoso, informed the audience that the company is poised, not only to bridge the gap in access to electricity in Nigeria, but also actively contribute to the improvement of the country’s relatively poor energy statistics.
“As Fenix International, we only offered solar home systems, and with ENGIE Energy Access we are now able to offer both solar home systems and mini-grid solutions to our customers. Our decentralized solutions cover the full spectrum of energy needs from basic lighting and phone charging (with our basic kit selling for N44,500 and can be paid off in 20 months) to more advances systems for households all the way to powering productive use equipment to promote entrepreneurship and boost economic activity in rural communities across Nigeria.
So far, we have had great success by impacting the lives of over 200,000 Nigerians and we have ambitious growth plans to scale even faster and wider across Nigeria, allowing us to bring our clean, reliable, and affordable energy to millions of Nigerians over the next five years”.
“Our business is a unique one, as we are serving customers who are considered high risk and often overlooked. We are grateful to our partners for deciding to take this journey with us to not only grow our business, but the wider PAYGo Solar and renewable energy industryies in Nigeria. We look forward to continued success with our current partners and are open to working with many more partners.”
Cardoso, said the company is operating isolated mini-grid system where communities are not connected to any distribution network and is to be utilized in an unserved area, that is, an area within a Distribution Licensee’s Network without an existing distribution system.
Universal electrification is the seventh of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals that the global community has committed to achieve by 2030. With Africa (and by extension Nigeria) accounting for a major part of the population of people without access to electricity, Cardoso is confident in the role that ENGIE Energy Access will play in changing the Nigeria’s access to energy statistics.