Past Opportunities

December 2019

2020 Ashden Awards

Deadline: December 11, 2019

In June 2020, we will be highlighting projects and organisations from around the world that are increasing access to sustainable energy and improving lives through sustainable energy, in response to the climate emergency. 

Chill Challenge: Affordable, Off-Grid Refrigeration

Deadline: December 16, 2019

The objective of the challenge is the development of refrigerators and icemakers that are significantly more affordable for off-grid communities than currently available units. EWB-USA intends to award grants of $25,000-$50,000 to as many as 10 teams to develop proof of concept prototypes. The competition will be open to all interested parties, and open to all refrigeration technologies. Specific design targets call for:

  • Development of a 150-250 liter refrigerator that can chill 20 liters of water/day from 35C to 3C, and cost less than $12/month to own and operate, or;
  • Development of an icemaker that can produce 100-1000 kgs of ice/day at a cost of $0.03/kg or less.

Household Solar Workforce Development Challenge

Deadline: December 15, 2019

The Household Solar Workforce Development Challenge will award up to $350,000 in grant funding to support scalable, innovative, third-party training solutions to the off-grid solar home system sector's workforce needs in sub-Saharan Africa. USAID, as part of its commitment to the Scaling Off-Grid Energy (SOGE) Grand Challenge for Development, is supporting the Household Solar Workforce Development Challenge run by the ResilientAfrica Network (RAN).

Solar E-Waste Challenge

Deadline: December 15, 2019

The Global LEAP Solar E-Waste Challenge, supported by USAID, will make up to $1.2 million in grant funding available to support the research and development of more sustainable solar home system and battery technologies for the off-grid solar sector in sub-Saharan Africa.
Successful applicants will receive funding to support implementation of their proposed projects over a 18-month period, with individual awards ranging from $50,000-$300,000, 

Solutions innovantes pour l’accès à l’énergie durable hors réseaux

Deadline: December 16, 2019

Les projets déposés devront mettre en œuvre des technologies et/ou organisations innovantes, génératrices d’activités économiques pérennes et réduisant leur empreinte environnementale sur l’ensemble du cycle de vie, et ce exclusivement en Afrique. Tout type d’innovation (technologique, sociale, pédagogique, sur le financement, sur la tarification et le plan d’affaire, frugale, dans les modes d’intervention, dans le suivi/la maintenance des installations…) est éligible.

January 2020

ARE Awards 2020

Deadline: January 31, 2020 (extended deadline)

By organising the Awards 2020, ARE wishes to highlight the clean energy access results achieved by the most passionate and innovative actors in the sector as well as to increase their impact further by sharing latest knowledge to new stakeholders interested to get engaged.

ARE will again reward the most effective initiative and/or project implemented with one Award per category. 

The ARE Awards 2020 will celebrate 6 categories for projects implemented in 2019.

February 2020

Honnold Foundation grant application Spring 2020

Deadline: February 7, 2020

The Honnold Foundation is now accepting grant applications for our Spring 2020 Grant Cycle! We provide unrestricted grant funding to organizations or projects that use solar energy to increase social and economic equity and reduce environmental impact.

Stanford Global Energy Heroes

Deadline: February 15, 2020

Stanford Global Energy Heroes is a global competition to recognize young people around the world who are using sustainable energy to make a positive impact in their communities.  Hosted by Stanford Energy Club and the Stanford Precourt Institute for Energy, it aims to inspire direct action to reduce carbon emissions in communities worldwide to: (a) provide access to affordable energy; (b) minimize environmental impact such as air and water pollution and carbon dioxide emissions; and (c) enable scalability and wide adoption. 

USADF-All On Off-Grid Energy Challenge

Deadline: February 29, 2020

Proposals are invited from eligible Nigerian off-grid energy companies. Selected enterprises will receive funding in the form of convertible debt and grant capital. 
To be considered for the Challenge, applicants must be 100% African-owned, majority Nigerian-owned and -managed private companies registered in Nigeria and must be operating in Nigeria.

March 2020

EEP Africa Call for Proposals: Clean Energy Powering Green Growth

Deadline: March 10, 2020

EEP Africa invites innovative project developers to submit applications for early stage clean energy projects in active development phase in Southern and East Africa. Projects will be evaluated based on Concept Innovation, Development Impact, and Business Model & Financial Sustainability. All applications need to demonstrate a clear need and additionality for EEP Africa financing. 
Applicants can apply for grants and repayable grants between EUR 200,000 —500,000. The minimum required co-financing is 30% of the total project budget.

Enabling Technologies Call

Deadline: March 22, 2020 (extended)

Efficiency for Access invites funding applications for R&D projects that will develop enabling technologies or products for weak and off-grid areas, with a particular focus on inclusivity and interoperability.
Up to £2 million in funding has been made available, supported by UK aid and the IKEA Foundation. Between £50,000 to £300,000 of funding is available per project.
The focus on enabling technologies was made in recognition of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). This includes SDG 5 to achieve gender equality, SDG 7 to ensure access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all, and SDG 10 to reduce inequality within and amongst countries.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: Please note due to increasing concerns surrounding COVID-19/coronavirus, the Efficiency for Access Research and Development Fund has decided to extend the submission deadline for the Enabling Technologies Funding Call to 6 pm GMT Sunday 22nd March. If you have any questions about this, please email 

2020 Global LEAP Awards Electric Pressure Cooker Competition

Deadline: March 27, 2020

The first ever Global LEAP Awards Electric Pressure Cooker Competition is accepting nominations for appropriately designed, highly energy efficient electric pressure cookers suitable for use in off-and weak-grid settings. All nominated products will undergo testing by an accredited laboratory for their energy performance, quality, and safety, and an evaluation by a panel of clean cooking experts.
Winners and Finalists of the 2020 Global LEAP Awards Electric Pressure Cooker competition will be eligible for up to $200,000 USD prize money, based on innovation as demonstrated during laboratory and user experience testing. 

April 2020

GBE au Bénin Call for expressions of interest (EOI)

Deadline: April 17, 2020 (extended)

The "Grüne Bürgerenergie für Afrika" (GBE, Green People’s Energy, in English) initiative is a project that supports the development of decentralized renewable energy in rural areas of Africa, involving local actors and private investors. It also promotes local value creation, productive and social use of energy, as well as job creation.
GBE supports energy access to consumers through standalone solar systems by means of any commercial business model. Although cash sales are the easiest to monitor and most widespread in Benin, GBE would like to promote instalment sales over a longer period, which renders energy access more affordable. Such models include Fee-For-Service (F4S) models, particularly in the case of electrifying larger customers and social institutions such as health centres.

Starter Business Acceleration

Deadline: April 27, 2020 (extended)

Applications for Starter Business Acceleration, a global accelerator for startups in the energy sector, start this Monday, February 17, and will continue until April 20. This year, the program created by EDP to unify the several instruments that support the group's entrepreneurship, reinforces its position as a business accelerator with startups and SMEs.
The ten projects with the greatest potential will later be selected for the final and the winner will be announced in Lisbon, in November, during the Web Summit, and will win a prize of 50,000 euros.

May 2020

Fond des Energies Renouvelables pour la Résilience du Burkina Faso

Deadline: May 2, 2020 (extended)

A travers une assistance technique et/ou financière, le projet 'Fond des Energies Renouvelables pour la Résilience du Burkina Faso (FERR-BF)' voudrait accompagner des projets qui puissent renforcer et accélérer la croissance des activités génératrices de revenus par l’adoption des énergies renouvelables (dont le solaire photovoltaïque et les foyers améliorés).

Siemens Design Challenge

Deadline: May 4, 2020

Now accepting applications for designs that meet global challenges in water and agriculture. Enter for a chance at two $10,000 awards.
Engineering for Change and Siemens USA are challenging innovators to design technology that helps provide abundant food and clean water globally. The challenge has two tracks: 
•    Zero Hunger (SDG 2): Design a post-harvest off-grid preservation technology.
•    Clean Water (SDG 6): Design low-cost, energy-efficient, scalable technology for desalinating brackish water. 

June 2020

Orange Social Venture Prize (OSVP)

Deadline: June 5, 2020

Awarded by Orange (, this prize recognises technological projects with a positive impact that improve living conditions for populations in Africa and the Middle East, in essential fields such as education, healthcare, agriculture, mobile payment or sustainable development.

OSVP is aimed at students, employees or entrepreneurs aged over 21 years and start-ups that are less than three years old, in the following countries: Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Jordan, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Morocco, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Tunisia.

REACT Kenya Relief Fund

Deadline: June 11, 2020

The REACT Kenya Relief Fund will provide emergency grants to distributed energy service companies who are struggling to maintain access to energy to their thousands of rural customers because of the unprecedented disruptions and challenges from operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.

BRILHO Mozambique market development fund (1st call)

Deadline: Each call will be operated on a first-come, first-serve basis, open for four months in each round, with no deadline but a closing window date

BRILHO’s mandate is to support private sector initiatives by leveraging its capacity for innovation and resources to develop and invest in off-grid solutions and services; and thus improve the lives of people through savings, well-being and livelihood opportunities, while providing commercial benefits for the private sector.

To achieve its objective, BRILHO’s Market Development Fund offers to selected businesses a mix of non-reimbursable funding for up to £ 1,500,000 per company and specialised technical support, to de-risk business initiatives that aim to achieve competitive commercial returns. Alongside this, BRILHO supports the sector ecosystem development by improving access to information, stimulating demand, setting quality benchmarks and advocating for a better regulatory framework.

July 2020

GDC Innovation Challenge

Deadline: July 13, 2020

The GDC’s new Innovation Challenge aims to support innovative ideas that increase the ability of last mile distributors to respond to shocks.

  • Up to £50,000 in funding to pilot the innovation
  • Expert technical assistance to support implementation
  • Connections to key stakeholders who could help make your idea an even bigger success
  • Profile and support to disseminate learnings and insights across the sector following implementation

PREO will fund Action Learning Projects up to €300,000 in value

Deadline: July 30, 2020

We are officially welcoming applications for grant funding from PREO for Productive Use of Energy (PUE) projects in sub-Saharan Africa. While we expect for the average project size to be between €100,000 and €200,000, we will consider projects up to €300,000 in value.

August 2020

Ignite opens International Tender for 300,000 SHS 

Deadline: August 22, 2020 (submission of EOI)

Ignite is the fastest-growing Pan-African developer of vital infrastructure projects, currently executing several nationwide projects in Africa, distributing, deploying and financing solar home systems (SHS). 

We are working to expand operations and impact further, and increase our product offering through a structured, formal procurement process of 300,000 SHS reaching last-mile communities, with affordability and reliability leading the way.

RFP - Assessment of Quality Verified and Non-Quality Verified Solar Products and Off-grid Appliances in Kenya 

Deadline: August 28, 2020

CLASP is seeking a consultant (firm/consortium) to work closely with VeraSol, the leading quality assurance program serving off-grid solar sector, to carry out a consumer study in Kenya that:

  1. Assesses the state of the quality verified & non-quality verified solar product market
  2. Characterizes the market for off-grid appliances

The project is expected to commence in September 2020 and be concluded by the end of February 2021.

September 2020

PFAN Call for Climate or Clean Energy Projects

Deadline: September 1, 2020

Are you looking for funding for your climate or clean energy project or to scale up your existing business?  

We accept applications for projects and scale up businesses in low- and middle-income countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Pacific Islands, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Central America and Caribbean Islands.

To be eligible for PFAN support, your project or business must provide climate change adaptation benefits, or offer or use clean energy technologies, products or services. 

RFP - Renewable Energy Program for Sub-Saharan Africa

Deadline: September 11, 2020 (extended)

The RfP intends to identify projects that are in line with the following characteristics:

  • Mini/off-grid renewable power Generation proposals.
  • In underserved areas (rural and/or periurban).
  • Special consideration to productive uses of energy.

A maximum of 28 EUR million will be available to provide subordinated debt to the projects. 

Energy Catalyst round 8: clean energy access, feasibility projects

Deadline: September 16, 2020

Organisations can apply for a share of up to £20 million to develop and demonstrate innovative solutions for clean, affordable and secure energy access in sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia or South East Asia.

Your early stage project’s total eligible costs must be between £50,000 and £300,000 as part of a feasibility study.

    Smart Communities Coalition Innovation Fund (SCCIF)

    Deadline: September 30, 2020

    The recently launched SCCIF, which aims at bringing private sector-led innovative solutions to displaced populations and crisis-affected host communities, is calling for proposals by interested parties.

    The fund will disburse grant amounts between 10,000 to 120,000 Euro, focusing on refugee-hosting areas of Kenya (except Dadaab) and Uganda.

    October 2020

    Clean Captive Installations for Industrial Clients in Sub-Saharan Africa 

    Deadline: October 9, 2020

    The project aims to demonstrate the economic and financial viability of clean captive energy installations for industries and to enhance their adoption in the four partner countries and beyond to the entire continent. Captive energy installations are energy generation facilities that are used (and sometimes also managed) by a commercial or industrial entity for their own energy consumption. Captive power plants can operate off-grid or can be connected to the grid to feed in excess generation.

    Techno-educational solutions in ProFuturo vulnerable environments

    Deadline: October 15, 2020 (extended)

    For the second consecutive year, the digital education program ProFuturo and the Telefónica’s open innovation hub Wayra are launching a global call for proposals to identify innovative projects that might contribute to taking on the technological and educational challenges that are faced in the vulnerable environments where ProFuturo operates.

    Entrepreneurs or start-ups that might contribute projects or beta products that are already built for responding to any of the challenges faced by ProFuturo wherever it operates:

    (i) a lack of connectivity,
    (ii) challenges related to energy access,
    (iii) innovation in hardware devices,
    (iv) the capacity to collect data on development of the program and analyse that data using learning analytics tools and
    (v) the low teaching and digital qualification of teachers and a lack of resources in classrooms.

    Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa - Call for Proposals in Burkina Faso, Liberia, and Zambia 

    Deadline: October 30, 2020

    BGFA has opened the Pre-Qualification stage of its Call for Proposals inviting off-grid energy companies to compete for results-based funding to bring clean, modern and affordable energy to customers in peri-urban and rural areas of Burkina Faso, Liberia and Zambia.
    The Pre-Qualification stage is now open for applications through the SmartME intake system. The platform will close on 30 October 2020 for submission of Pre-Qualification applications. The Pre-Qualification stage, including a review of applications, is expected to be completed by the end of November 2020.

    The planned country programme for Mozambique has been postponed and will form part of a separate, subsequent Call for Proposals.

    Call for proposal: Tanzania Livelihoods 

    Deadline: October 30, 2020

    The EnAccess Foundation is looking for solutions that enhance the socioeconomic impact of energy access in Tanzania. Funding is available for OpenSource projects (up to USD 150,000) that have the potential to demonstrate a novel livelihood-based energy access business model.

    We would like to see pilot concepts and/or ideas; this could include building and testing the prototypes that are beyond the exploratory stage and are ready for market validation.

    November 2020

    Kenya Off-Grid Solar Access Project (KOSAP) (round 2)

    Deadline: November 6, 2020

    This round will make a total of KES 450 million available in the form of incentives for solar service providers to sell solar systems in the 14 counties covered under KOSAP. The application deadline for this 2nd  round is November 06, 2020 (5pm EAT).

    KOSAP is a US $150 million flagship project of the Ministry of Energy, financed by the World Bank. SNV, in partnership with SunFunder Inc., is the KOSAP Facilities Manager, on behalf of the Ministry of Energy.

    Creating Hope in Conflict: A Humanitarian Grand Challenge (round 3)

    Deadline: November 16, 2020

    Apply to the Creating Hope in Conflict: a Humanitarian Grand Challenge program to receive funding of up to $250,000 for new ideas, and up to $3,000,000 for proven solutions ready to scale up, as well as mentorship, resources and ongoing supports.

    We’re looking to fund and accelerate solutions to reach the most vulnerable and hardest-to-reach people in conflict-generated humanitarian crises. We seek solutions that have the potential to create wider, transformative changes within the humanitarian sector in order to provide: safe water and sanitation; energy; life-saving information; and health supplies and services to help conflict-affected people.

    Nigeria: Energising Education solar hybrid tender

    Deadline: November 25, 2020

    Nigeria’s Rural Electrification Agency (REA) is inviting companies to prequalify to install solar hybrid systems at seven universities and two teaching hospitals with combined capacity of around 38MW. The tender is being funded through the World Bank Group-backed Energising Education Programme Phase II and Nigeria Electrification Project.

    December 2020

    Energy, Mobility and Agriculture Innovation program

    Deadline: December 20, 2020

    Seedstars and Shell Foundation have joined forces to look for sustainable, scalable and innovative working towards access to energy, sustainable agriculture* and mobility.

    The objective of this program is to support, catalyse and train early-stage (seed) tech startups addressing challenges related to access to energy (household energy, energy for business, energy nexus), sustainable agriculture (value chain innovations improving access to finance, technology, market or knowledge) or sustainable mobility (safe rural and last-mile mobility for people and goods) in Africa.

    D-Prize Solar Lamp Challenge

    Deadline: November 8, 2020 (extension until November 29th for registered people)

    600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa use kerosene lanterns to light their homes. Pico solar lamps are cheaper, cleaner, create cost savings, and increase household incomes by 30%. Can you sell solar lights to rural or slum-dwelling households in need? D-Prize will award up to $20,000 to help winning teams launch an initial three-month pilot of a venture distributing pico solar lamps.

    Gender and Energy Innovation Facility in Tanzania

    Deadline: December 21, 2020

    Hivos, ENERGIA, Energising Development (EnDev) and Modern Energy Cooking Services (MECS) established The Gender and Energy Innovation Facility  with the objective to stimulate innovations at the gender and energy access nexus, including on clean and modern cooking. The Facility is especially looking for innovations on: 1) gender and energy entrepreneurship and employment, 2) gender and energy in the care economy, and 3) gender in energy policy and practice.
    Successful candidates get to participate in an online-three-day-bootcamp to generate and refine ideas, have the chance to get EUR 25,000 in funding to run pilots for 3-9 months, and potentially an additional EUR 10,000 to scale up.

    Access to Modern Energy Challenges

    Deadline: rolling basis, with final deadline December 21, 2020

    DCHI and RVO have launched the second Humanitarian Accelerator Programme (HAP) for Access to Modern Energy (AME). Access to modern and clean energy is a precondition for social wellbeing and economic development, and is a key focus for DCHI. 

    Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance

    Deadline: December 22, 2020

    Climate finance entrepreneurs from all over the world can apply for the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance. We’re looking for innovative finance solutions that can unlock investment to tackle some of the most difficult climate and sustainable development challenges and investment opportunities for a post-COVID, green economic recovery.

    KKCF Competitive Business Challenge

    Deadline: December 22, 2020

    The Competitive Business Challenge of KKCF is an opportunity for local entrepreneurs, social enterprise directors and company owners to access performance-based grants and technical support for expanding or establishing new products and services to serve the refugees and host communities of these areas.

    Solarization of UNHCR Deep Field Compounds

    Deadline: January 15, 2021

    UNHCR seeks qualified companies for the provision of solar electricity as a service. The purpose of the present Expression of interest (EOI) is to: 

    • Obtain information on the experience, expertise, capability and financial resources of interested companies/consortia; and 
    • Establish a shortlist of pre-qualified bidders for the next tender stage. 

    This tender will be run as a two-stage process and this first EOI stage will be followed bu a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the pre-qualified bidders, which is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2021. 

    GroFin Small and Growing Business Fund

    Deadline: December 31, 2020

    GroFin is a pioneering development financier specializing in financing and supporting small and growing businesses (SGBs) across Africa and the Middle East. GroFin combines patient capital and specialized business support to grow emerging market enterprises. 

    Focus on Small and Growing Businesses (SGBs) that are grossly underserved by other funds or financiers. Delivers a unique integrated solution for patient risk capital and end-to-end business support to start-up and growing businesses at the SME base.

    Locations: Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Egypt, South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda

    COVID-19 Recovery Fund Grant

    Deadline: December 31, 2020

    The COVID-19 Recovery Fund Grant demonstrates Shine’s commitment, during these extraordinarily challenging times, to sustain energy access initiatives that are locally-rooted, women-led and managed and/or directed by local communities. These small grants will provide funding for last-mile energy access entrepreneurs, cooperatives, agencies and community leaders as they help vulnerable populations struggling with the global pandemic. The fund was designed by The Shine Campaign and Shine’s Council of Women Leaders in Energy Access.

    January 2021

    EDP Access to Energy Fund Program

    Deadline: January 10, 2021

    The third edition of this financing program has €500,000 and two new target locations.

    The focus on projects promoting access to renewable energy in developing countries is one of the commitments that prompted EDP to roll out yet another edition of the A2E (Access to Energy) Fund. With a budget of half a million euros, this financing program was created to sponsor clean energy projects in Mozambique, Nigeria, Malawi, and, for the first time, Angola and Rwanda.

    In this third edition - aimed at both for-profit and non-profit organizations - the Fund will give each project €25,000 to €100,000. 

    REACT SSA Somalia programme

    Deadline: January 22, 2021

    The REACT SSA Somalia programme is a US$ 8.5 million fund that seeks to reduce poverty through a transformational increase in the use of renewable energy by off-grid households in the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) and Somaliland. This programme aims to promote private sector investment and innovation in low-cost clean energy and climate change catalysed at scale.

    REACT Kenya Results-Based Financing program (REACT RBF)

    Deadline: January 26, 2021

    The REACT Sub-Saharan Africa Programme has a dedicated Results-Based Financing (RBF) window of US $ 4m targeting clean energy providers in Kenya to drive expansion of access to clean energy across the country.
    Funding to companies in Kenya will be through results-based financing that provides financial incentives to increase access to clean energy for households across the country, with additional pro-poor incentives that reward companies reaching the poorest households.

    Accelerating the green transition and energy access Partnership with Africa!

    Deadline: January 27, 2021 (24h extended)

    Actions should demonstrate innovative sustainable energy solutions that consider climate adaptation and mitigation potential compared to other technologies/solutions in the African social, economic and environmental contexts. The solutions may address:

    • development of renewable energy sources, including solutions for off-grid communities, and their integration into the existing energy system, considering the generation of renewable energy, the transmission, and the use of storage/battery systems.
    • energy efficiency

    Solutions should consider both urbanised and rural contexts in Africa, and the ongoing water-energy-food nexus action, with the aim of providing sustainable energy access (electricity/cooking) and/or creating improved health, economic wealth and jobs (productive use of energy/energy efficiency).

    February 2021

    Keeling Curve Prize

    Deadline: February 10, 2021

    The Keeling Curve Prize is looking for projects with a proven track record of taking greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere. They’ve developed five categories, each one addressing a specific sector of climate innovation: Capture & Utilization, Energy, Finance, Social & Cultural Pathways and Transport & Mobility.

    They award $25,000 to two projects in each category annually.

    Impact-Based and Action-Driven Research

    Deadline: February 25, 2021 (extended)

    In the framework of IMPACT-R, organizations with a strong social mission working in developing countries (microfinance institutions, cooperatives, NGOs, energy and water technology suppliers) can apply to receive financial support to conduct household data collection studies.
    The purpose of the studies is to investigate the nexus between access to energy and access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene, combined with a detailed needs/market assessment at the household level.
    Selected institutions will receive support for the field staff involved in the data collection and will have the opportunity to collaborate with leading research institutions.

    Start-Up Facilitator for African off-grid energy companies

    Deadline: February 28, 2021

    Solarkiosk calls the most promising African Start-Ups in the off-grid energy sector to make them fit for funding and help them find the right investors. If you are an African off-grid energy entrepreneur and ready for funding, apply NOW!

    A2EI Agricultural Machine Ranking

    Deadline: open end

    Want clear answers on productive-use agricultural equipment? The Access to Energy Institute (A2EI) is commencing a new research project to identify, evaluate, and improve solar-powered, productive-use technologies that strengthen rural livelihoods. A2EI is seeking stakeholder input to narrow the focus of the research to the technologies that are most relevant to the off-grid industry and its customers. Share your ideas here: 

    The IDEA: Deliver Energy Access

    Deadline: February 28, 2021

    Potential projects are evaluated based on their overall impact and benefit to communities and the surrounding environment, and those selected can tap into the expertise of the entire IDEA network for guidance and support. Submissions for the next IDEA round are due February 28, 2021, with finalists selected by the end of March 2021.

    USADF-ALL ON Nigeria Off-Grid Energy Challenge

    Deadline: February 28, 2021

    Proposals of up to US$100,000 in 50/50 blended financing (grant/ debt or equity) per award will be considered, with a maximum of twenty (20) awards anticipated.

    To be considered for the Challenge, applicants must be 100% African-owned, majority Nigerian-owned and -managed private companies registered in Nigeria and must be operating in Nigeria.

    Projects are to be focused on increasing sustainable energy access, specifically off-grid solutions, and extending the delivery of electrification to unserved and underserved communities in Nigeria. The type of clean energy technologies to be proposed may include, but are not limited to, solar, hydro, wind, biomass, biogas, gas, and hybrid systems .

    March 2021

    Green Energy Ventures Accelerator programme in Malawi and Nigeria

    Deadline: March 9, 2021 (extended)

    The Enterprise Development for Women-Owned Ventures initiative is organised in partnership with the African Women’s Development Fund. This particular programme will be implemented in Malawi and Nigeria.
    The Forum thus announces a call for applications for the Women in Green Energy Ventures Accelerator Programme. It will choose 10 women-owned and/or women-led enterprises involved in renewable and green energy production or services.
    Entrepreneurs will receive support and training to scale up their businesses. They will also be able to access one-on-one expert mentoring and coaching; tangible opportunities to raise capital; and access to networks, partners and investors for growth.

    Hack the Normal - From Africa for Africa

    Deadline: March 4, 2021 (extended)

    Hack The Normal Africa focuses on the financial and sustainability problems facing the world and Africa. Under the leadership of Defy, which puts sustainability in its focus by innovating new technologies, people come together and ask how to ensure the sustainability of trade, natural resources, and life in Africa. The hackathon examines the impact of sustainability of energy, water, food, and trade individually, socially, materially, and spiritually. It develops solutions by feeding on different sectors in a digital field where many disciplines such as sociology, design, technology, psychology, human resources, management, and communication will meet.

    Universal Energy Facility for mini-grid projects in Benin

    Deadline: March 4, 2021 (Pre-qualification)

    The Benin window of the Universal Energy Facility is funded by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

    As of 28 January 2021, companies seeking results-based finance for mini-grid projects in Benin can apply for pre-qualification to the facility. In Benin, the Universal Energy Facility will disburse grant payments to deliver over 7,000 electricity connections based on a results-based incentive of USD 433 per connection.

    Ashden Awards 2021

    Deadline: March 17, 2021 (extended)

    This year’s award categories include greener communities, energy access, green skills, natural climate solutions, sustainable cooling and more. Some categories focus on the UK, and others cover work in low- and middle-income countries. Businesses, public bodies and charities can all apply.

    Winners receive a prize of up to £20,000 and a package of support.

    Request For Applications : Healthcare Electrification to Improve Maternal and Child Health Services 

    Deadline: March 22, 2021 

    This grant funding will support the scale up of existing business models and/or technologies for the electrification of healthcare facilities, specifically for those providing maternal and child healthcare services. Proposals must include at least one of the following:

    • Photovoltaic (PV) electrification of a complete off-grid or weak-grid (average of less than 8 hours a day of electricity) healthcare facility that offers maternal and child healthcare services
    • PV electrification of only a maternity ward of an existing off-grid or weak-grid (average of less than 8 hours a day of electricity) healthcare facility

    Free Electrons

    Deadline: March 29, 2021

    Startups will work alongside leading energy utilities from around the globe to deliver cutting edge solutions and co-create the future of energy. The program will focus on working together to pilot projects, commercially deploy products,  facilitate investment opportunities, learning and development. Deals to date exceed USD $50m+.
    Startups are in the running for the prize of USD 200,000 – no strings attached.

    Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa - Call for Proposals in Mozambique (BGFA2) 

    Deadline: March 29, 2021 

    In February 2021, BGFA will continue its expansion to Mozambique and invite interested energy service providers (ESPs) to compete for a funding window geared specifically towards developers of micro-grids. Successful applicants will be able to deploy innovative technology and strong business models to supply energy services tailored to customer needs and ability to pay, and to scalable generation capacity in accordance with the growth in actual demand.

    The launch of the pre-qualification stage is expected in the beginning of February 2021 with the publication of the pre-qualification guidelines. The conditions for this second round of BGFA funding (BGFA2) will be similar to those outlined in the pre-qualification guidelines for BGFA1 and adapted for Mozambique. 

    Health Electrification Finance Mechanisms

    Deadline: March 29, 2021

    The Shell Foundation and Odyssey’s Powering Health Platform have developed a pilot program to test health facility electrification models in Sub Saharan Africa, in cooperation with UK Aid. The overall aim is to gather data and learn from the  business models and relationships from developers who are on the ground engaging in discussions on powering health facilities. These learnings will be shared with other donors in the sector who are interested in Powering Health programs at scale.

    April 2021

    Open Africa Power 2021: Call for applications

    Deadline: April 6, 2021

    The ambition of the program is to empower and retain African talent in a crucial sector like energy, of paramount importance to unlock Africa’s sustainable future. The program offers knowledge on all aspects of sustainable electricity production and distribution to the best and most motivated PhD, Master’s, and MBA students and alumni. The program also aims to create a networking platform for participants in order to maximize impact.

    Training programme for last mile distributors

    Deadline: April 12, 2021

    The Global Distributors Collective’s new training programme is designed to help last mile distribution companies tackle common challenges, including improving their sales and staff retention and building more resilient and efficient agent networks. The programme kicks-off in April and is available in English and French. It costs $250 USD, which includes access for two managers and an unlimited number of sales agents. If you are selling beneficial products to last mile households in East or West Africa, we encourage you to sign-up! Click here for more info or get in touch with the GDC team if you have questions.

    Startup|Energy: Energy Camp East Africa

    Deadline: April 15, 2021

    Do you have a mature product or business idea and/or a first prototype for the East African decentralized renewable energy sector? Then you are right at the Energy Camp East Africa!
    Individuals and teams who are in the (pre-)founding phase with their mature idea or whose start-up is no more than five years old can apply.

    COVID-19 Initiatives

    Restart Fund
    Who: OPES-LCEF
    Geography: East Africa

    Covid-19 Window
    Who: GET.invest
    Geography: Global

    COVID-19 Working Capital Facility
    Who: REPP
    Geography: Africa

    COVID-19 Response
    Who: Open Road
    Geography: Global

    COVID-19 innovations
    Who: Global Innovation Exchange (GIE) 
    Geography: Global

    Facility for Humane Action
    Who: Aavishkaar Group
    Geography: India

    COVID-19 Coalition
    Who: Sorenson Impact Foundation
    Geography: Global

    Startups vs COVID-19
    Who: various
    Geography: India

    COVID-19 Recovery Fund Grant
    Who: Shine
    Geography: vulnerable countries