Sierra Leone Wins West Africa’s Energy Revolution Award

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The West African for Climate & Clean Energy Financing (WAFCCEF-3), organised by The Private Financing Advisory Network (PFAN), hosted its third Business Plan Competition at the African Development Bank Headquarters in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, 12th April 2018.

This year’s competition attracted over a 150 contestants from all over West Africa and 20 were admitted into the Semi Finals in Lagos Nigeria, and were assigned coaches in June 2017 to sharpen their business plans and submit to the final round. The top 10 finalists emerged and were announced this past November and to compete in the finals.

The competition for the first place winner and runner up were held in a “shark tank” like manner and the three projects out of Sierra Leone clenched the enviable winning! Both the first place (tied) and runner up positions were secured by 3 Sierra Leone renewable energy projects.

The joint first place winners are: THE MASADA WASTE TRANSFORMERS JV AND SOLAR ERA HOLDINGS, with SEWA ENERGY RESOURCES (SL) LTD as runner up.

Project overview:
THE MASADA WASTE TRANSFORMERS JV – Turning waste into socially inclusive growth and unlocking the potential of biomas in Sierra Leone, a 6 megawatts off and on grid Waste to Energy project SOLAR ERA HOLDINGS – 25MW Solar PV project covering Bo – Kenema, developed by Africa Growth and Energy Solutions (AGES) UK PLC. SEWA ENERGY RESOURCES (SL) LTD – The Betmai – 27 MW « run off the river » Hydroelectric Project on the Pampana River in Tonkolili -covering the rural and national grid.

The competition was well attended and witnessed by a mix of over 200 investors from both private equity and debt funds and judged by a professional panel of judges composed of representatives from the African Development Bank, Private Equity and Institutional Finance Personalities to listen to and judge the 10 finalists that emerged from the 150 contestants across West Africa.

This is unprecedented, as out of this year’s 10 finalists, the top 3 diverse renewable energy projects (Waste to Energy, Solar PV and Hydro) from Sierra Leone won! The competition was tight and against projects from Nigeria, Senegal, Bukina Faso and Ghana, and Sierra Leone clenched the winning! « This is a great testament to all the hard work that we have done as a country to integrate our energy mix and taking on an energy revolution! »

The winners will now receive ongoing project finance structuring, consultancy from PFAN, senior advisors and financial assistance towards studies to ensure bankability and access to project financing from PFAN and AFDB network.

All 3 winners are members of the Renewable Energy Association of Sierra Leone, REASL. For more information about their projects, contact the *Renewable Energy Association*

at www.reasl.org or email
us at info@reasl.com.

 

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Abu Bakarr Tarawally is a Journalist based in Freetown. He works for the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation as a radio producer. He has once served as Editor for a few newspapers in Freetown, including Sierra Express Media, The Exclusive Newspaper and his own newspaper, the Daily Express Publications. He is a teacher trainer, and loves writing and reading a lot. Email: abstarawally@gmail.com. Call +232 88601277 or +2327661303.

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