Awagomè, – The Government of Togo’s “CIZO” initiative has made a significant stride forward as BBOXX, a new generation utility which provides reliable energy access to communities with its solar home systems, officially launched its operations in Togo.
H.E. President Faure Gnassingbé, President of the Republic of Togo, visited one of BBOXX’s first customers in the rural town of Awagomè, to mark the start of the company’s roll out of its smart solar home systems.
Following a tender process, BBOXX was awarded a contract to work with the Government of Togo to roll out 300,000 of its solar home systems in the country by 2022. The company has already imported its products and will begin selling its systems in people’s homes immediately, with an initial target of installing 10,000 in the next 12 months.
The innovative partnership is part of the Government’s aim to dramatically improve access to electricity for people in Togo, particularly in rural areas. The mission of “CIZO” (which means lighting up in “Guin” language) is to bring electricity to more than 2 million citizens by 2022. It will also provide the adoption of mobile payment solutions across rural areas, helping to improve the financial inclusion of rural communities.
BBOXX will work with La Poste, the largest distribution network in the country, to sell and distribute its solar home systems and other small electrical goods, such as televisions and radios. BBOXX will also be opening shops within La Poste’s locations.
BBOXX’s operations in Togo, a financial hub in West Africa, have been in part financed by capital raised via Union Togolaise de Banque, a local bank.
BBOXX customers will be able to pay for their solar system usage in a “pay-as-you-go” fashion, using mobile payments solutions such as TMoney or Flooz. They will also have access to BBOXX’s proactive customer service, which through remote monitoring solves issues such as battery depletion before they become a problem for customers.
The Hon. Marc Dèdèriwè Abli-Bidamon, Minister of Energy and Mines, said: “The CIZO Initiative aims to significantly increase the electrification rate in rural areas of Togo by 2022 through the use of solar home systems.
“The commercialization of solar systems through the participation of private actors will accelerate the impact on the Togolese economy. Against this backdrop, the government is creating the right environment to foster and enable private actors to operate efficiently.”
Mansoor Hamayun, Chief Executive Officer of BBOXX, said: “We have made an excellent start towards our target of deploying 300,000 systems in Togo by 2022. We have proven we can set the right foundations under a very tight time schedule and we are now ready to scale up our operations. We’ve benefitted enormously from the Government’s support to create the right framework to operate effectively and help improve the quality of life of rural communities in Togo.
“Raising capital locally through Union Togolaise de Banque has made financial matters more straightforward for us and will boost our expansion across the country. We aim to create more than 1,000 direct jobs in Togo in the next five years from our activities.”
“We are already providing our services and the on-grid experience they bring to customers in Togo and are looking forward to working in partnership with La Poste to reach many more in the next months.”
BBOXX is making significant progress in Africa – Togo is the latest country in which it has a footprint and builds on its operations in Kenya, Rwanda, Nigeria and Cameroon.
The company has so far deployed 150,000 of its systems, improving the lives of more than half a million people in 35 countries, providing reliable electricity for lights, smart phones and home appliances to off-grid rural communities.