Expanding rural energy entrepreneurship and access to clean lighting in East Africa
Description/achievement of initiative

By 2016, Nuru Energy will make its portable, rechargeable LED lights available to up to 1.8 million rural households in East Africa thru an expanded network of 10,000 village-level entrepreneurs.

Implementation methodologies

As this is our core business, all of our resources are dedicated to this effort.

Nuru Energy was aslo seed-funded by the World Bank in 2008 and currently operates in East Africa and India. With an enduring commitment to solving the global problem of energy poverty, which affects over 2 billion people worldwide, Nuru Energy has developed a one-of-a-kind robust and simple-to-use off-grid recharging platform, the Nuru POWERCycle™ pedal generator. The POWERCycle™ provides reliable clean, sustainable power anytime, anywhere and is hundreds of times more efficient than current solar-based solutions at a fraction of the cost. It is used to recharge both mobile phones as well as Nuru Energy's own portable modular LED lights, which can be recharged five at a time in 20 minutes, with each light providing up to 10 days of light to a rural household. Our bottom-up approach is evident not only in every product that we develop, but also in the way that we deliver these products to market. We work with local organizations to recruit and train micro-franchise entrepreneurs, Nuru Energy Village-level Entrepreneurs (VLEs), who sell Nuru's LED lights to their community and then offer POWERCycle™ recharging services for a small fee, typically earning in 20 minutes what they previously earned in an entire day. For its efforts, Nuru Energy has been recognized as the recipient of numerous global awards, including the prestigious 2010 UNEP Sasakawa Prize and the 2010 UNDP World Business and Development Award. To learn more, please visit: Nuru, Energy for Empower


Nuru Energy
Deliverable Date
Nuru Energy is making its portable, rechargeable light-emitting diode (LED) lights available to up to 1.8 million rural households in Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania. Nuru Lights help lower energy costs by up to 85 percent and reduce dependency on kerosene, an inefficient, polluting, costly and unsafe energy source.The company's unique distribution strategy is to sell its lights (and other off-grid products) indirectly to customers through a network of rural entrepreneurs. Customers bring their lights to village level entrepreneurs who recharge them with Nuru Energy's POWERCycle pedal generator, which can recharge up to five Nuru Lights at a time in 20 minutes. The company expects to expand its network of entrepreneurs to 10,000 by 2016. 2016

Action Network
  • Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All)
MR. Sameer Hajee , CEO, shajee@nuruenergy.com

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