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Altech awarded $1.5M for affordable energy in DRC

Altech awarded $1.5M to provide affordable, clean energy solutions in Democratic Republic of Congo

Altech, the homegrown solar business dedicated to bringing clean and affordable energy to Democratic Republic of Congo, has been awarded $1.5 million from the Humanitarian Grand Challenge: Creating Hope in Conflict. 

This partnership funding will enable Altech to further improve access to clean energy in DRC while creating employment opportunities, economic prosperity, and access to finance, all leading to systemic change in the country. 

Under the partnership, Altech will be able to reach eight UNHCR-recognized conflict zones in Eastern DRC, opening 34 sales outlets and 55 points of sales. Across these new areas, Altech will distribute 30,000 solar lanterns and 12,700 solar lighting solutions, positively affecting the lives of over 220,000 hardest-to-reach people, all while creating local job opportunities by setting up three local assembly lines in Lubumbashi, Bukavu, and Aru.

Malango Washikala, co-founder and co-CEO of Altech said: “The Democratic Republic of the Congo houses one of Africa’s most complex and long-standing humanitarian crises. The vast majority of the population – an estimated 64% - are considered extremely poor, and as a result lack access to clean and affordable energy. I know firsthand what it is like to live without light and power. When I was a kid we lived in a poor rural house and my parents often had no money for kerosene. These experiences are the source of my motivation to help improve daily life in Congo. This is the challenge Altech aim to solve. Since we established Altech in 2012, we have built the most profitable, impactful PAYGo solar business in the DR Congo. With support from Creating Hope in Conflict: a Humanitarian Grand Challenge, we are able to geographically expand to over 130 sales shops, as the only PAYGo company in the DR Congo with national reach, addressing the energy deficit in the country,”

Altech, who has raised £2.5 million from 6 investment raises on Energise Africa, has established itself as a leading provider of solar power solutions to off-grid communities there and operates in 21 of the DRC’s 26 provinces.

The Democratic Republic of Congo has a population of nearly 82 million people, over half of whom still live in rural areas, where electrification rates are below 1%. In response to this enormous challenge, in 2013 Washikala Malango and Iongwa Mashangaoto formed Altech in DRC, a home they were forced to flee from during the Congolese civil war of the 1990s.  

Their approach is Congolese-centric, their solutions, technology and finance plans are all designed to suit the particular needs of the Congolese people. A true home-grown success story, to date, Altech has distributed over 270,000 solar products positively impacting 1,350,000 lives.  

Altech have also recently announced an expansion, looking at revolutionising the e-mobility market in DRC, with the launch of a new e-mobility project, providing green transport alternatives. 

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