MyJouleBox, a Benin-anchored African solar distributor and operator, has raised €3 million ($3.5 million) Series A round to deepen its presence in its home market and accelerate its expansion in Burkina Faso, Senegal and Togo.
EDFI ElectriFI, an impact investment facility funded by the European Union, invested €1.5 million of the total. This is split into €500,000 as equity alongside Gaia Impact Fund and €1 million as convertible notes together with Hivos-Triodos Fund.
Incorporated in France, MyJouleBox operates under the trade brand ARESS. The company was co-founded by Paul Berthomieu (CEO) and Léonide Michael Sinsin (COO).
According to EDFI ElectriFI, only 40% of Benin’s citizens have access to electricity though there is a significant urban-rural gap. While 70% of urban residents have access to electricity, only 18% people in rural areas have the facility.
The county has set an ambitious target to achieve urban and rural electrification rates of 95% and 65%, respectively, by 2025. A quarter of the country’s energy mix is expected to come from renewable energy and solar demand is projected to grow by 20% per year by 2035.
MyJouleBox says it has been operating profitably since its inception. The company offers a wide range of off-grid solar solutions, ranging from solar home systems to self-consumption solutions for semi-urban households and SMEs, including large solar back-up systems for commercial customers.
The fresh funding will help the company expand its customer base and deploy up to 36 MW of photovoltaic solar modules by 2023. With this funding, the company aims to reach about 55,000 new beneficiaries and save more than 40,000 tons of carbon dioxide every year.
Finergreen acted as the financial advisor to MyJouleBox for the transaction. MyJouleBox was supported by the law firm Allen & Overy and the investors’ consortium by DGFLA.