M-Kopa Solar has received a $10 million investment from FinDev Canada.
Keeping the lights on #beyondthegrid thanks to @safaricom for enabling customers to make daily payments for their @mkopasolar home systems through their phones #financialinclusion #cleanenergy pic.twitter.com/VAthZFVIA9
— M-KOPA Solar (@mkopasolar) March 19, 2018
The investment comes after the company completed a restructuring exercise that saw staff count reduce by 18% from 1000 to 850 across East Africa. About 78 developers were fired and their work has now been outsourced to a foreign company called Applicita that is owned by the company’s new CTO.
According to the CEO Jesse Moore, the restructuring process has been driven by the need to increase its competitiveness, enhance long-term sustainability, and boost investors’ returns.
FinDev’s $10 Million Investment
The FinDev investment was led by CDC, an investor that had formerly pumped $7 million into the company, and includes follow-on investments by Generation Investment Management and LGT Venture Philanthropy. The two firms are current M-Kopa shareholders.
M-Kopa Solar is the most funded startup in Kenya and it has reached more than 600,000 homes and connected them to off-grid electricity. However, the company continues to raise eyebrows over its status as a Kenyan startup since its senior management is mostly composed of foreigners. What’s more, the matter of sacking local employees to outsource its operations to a foreign company will not go forgotten.