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    HomeEcosystem NewsWESTERN AFRICAY Combinator-backed Nigerian Cleantech Startup Oolu Acquired in Landmark Deal

    Y Combinator-backed Nigerian Cleantech Startup Oolu Acquired in Landmark Deal

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    In a strategic move aimed at bolstering renewable energy access across West Africa, Ignite Power, a leading provider of distributed infrastructure solutions, has announced its acquisition of Oolu, a prominent Distributed Renewable Energy (DRE) solutions provider in the region. This acquisition underscores Ignite Power’s commitment to replicating its success in East and Southern Africa and signifies its entry into the vibrant West African market.

    The acquisition of Oolu marks a significant milestone for Ignite Power as it aims to extend its impact in Nigeria, Senegal, Burkina Faso, and Cameroon. Yariv Cohen, CEO of Ignite Power, expressed enthusiasm about the acquisition, stating, “We are excited to welcome the Oolu team to the Ignite Power family. Oolu has built a solid business infrastructure for expansion and growth across the region.”

    With Ignite Power’s proven technologies for last-mile operations and strong financial positioning, coupled with Oolu’s established presence and expertise in West Africa, the combined entity is poised to make substantial strides in the distributed renewable energy sector.

    Ignite Power’s track record in Kenya, where it completed two strategic acquisitions last year, serves as a testament to its transformative impact. Through seamless integration and deployment of cutting-edge technologies, the company quadrupled sales and reduced market prices by 35% within four months, setting a new standard for excellence and affordability in the sector.

    Oolu, a graduate of the renowned Y Combinator accelerator, has been instrumental in providing clean and affordable energy access to over 800,000 people across Nigeria, Senegal, Burkina Faso, and Cameroon. The company’s diverse range of DRE systems, including solar home systems, productive use of energy (PUE) solutions, and commercial and industrial (C&I) projects, has contributed to its strong market presence in the region.

    Dan Rosa, Co-founder and CEO of Oolu, emphasized the opportunity presented by joining forces with Ignite Power, stating, “Joining the Ignite family presents a remarkable opportunity to blend Oolu’s strong operational presence across West Africa with Ignite’s proven expertise and advanced technologies.”

    The acquisition also allows Ignite Power to strategically enter the C&I sector, leveraging Oolu’s successful deployment of 3 MW across various projects and a growing portfolio of new solar projects in Nigeria.

    The potential for distributed solar energy in West Africa, particularly in Nigeria, is substantial. With over 80 million people lacking access to reliable electricity in Nigeria alone, distributed solar energy solutions offer a compelling alternative, especially in rural areas where grid access is limited.

    The recent government decision to remove subsidies for fuel and diesel in Nigeria has further underscored the appeal of solar energy. As fuel and diesel prices escalate, businesses and households are increasingly turning to solar to mitigate energy costs, presenting vast opportunities for the solar sector.

    Ignite Power’s extensive experience in operating under Results-Based Financing (RBF) programs supported by leading financiers positions it well to deepen partnerships across West Africa. The World Bank’s commitment to bolstering rural electrification efforts, exemplified by initiatives like the Distributed Access through Renewable Energy Scale-up (DARES) project, aligns closely with Ignite Power’s mission.

    With a track record of impacting millions of lives, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, creating jobs, and winning industry awards, Ignite Power remains at the forefront of the distributed and renewable energy revolution. Yariv Cohen reiterated the company’s commitment to a cleaner, sustainable future, stating, “With the acquisition of Oolu, we are one step closer to realizing our vision of a world powered by clean, sustainable, and distributed energy.”

    Charles Rapulu Udoh is a Lagos-based lawyer, who has several years of experience working in Africa’s burgeoning tech startup industry. He has closed multi-million dollar deals bordering on venture capital, private equity, intellectual property (trademark, patent or design, etc.), mergers and acquisitions, in countries such as in the Delaware, New York, UK, Singapore, British Virgin Islands, South Africa, Nigeria etc. He’s also a corporate governance and cross-border data privacy and tax expert. As an award-winning writer and researcher, he is passionate about telling the African startup story, and is one of the continent’s pioneers in this regard.

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