Africa Energy Forum

Winner announced for AfDB “African Utility of the Future” Competition

Winning company Konexa named during final panel of Africa Energy Form 2020, receiving prize fund of USD $5,000. The competition inspired team-building and innovative ideas to transform current utilities into Advanced, Futuristic, SMART, Sustainable and Agile African Power Utilities.

The overarching principle was to create a platform for current and aspiring asset-owners to come up with innovative, realistic, practical and implementable ideas for “leap-frogging” existing utilities in the future. In the face of steep competition, Konexa’s anonymous submission was chosen by the panel of judges based on its transformative value across 5 pillars of sustainable utility operation as defined by the African Development Bank. Konexa aspires to own and operate grid and off-grid power assets across Africa. They are pioneering an integrated utility model that accelerates access to reliable power by leveraging cost efficient and disruptive technologies. Batchi Baldeh, Director for the Power Systems Development Division at AfDB commented; ”The Bank in partnership with EnergyNet is happy to announce the winner of the African Utility of the Future Design Competition for 2020 as Konexa, with their innovative integrated Distribution Franchise model. The proposed model challenges financing institutions such as the African Development Bank to begin “leap frogging” into the future and to develop financing mechanisms to match the needs of these futuristic utilities, by providing opportunities and mechanisms for access to low cost infrastructure finance, and mechanisms to address local and hard currency challenges.” CEO of Konexa Pradeep Pursnani added; “We’re honoured to be awarded this prize. Konexa’s Integrated Utility model aims to help governments and utilities deliver their vision of 24/7 power for everyone in the country on a far more rapid timeframe. Konexa is the first integrated utility deploying long-term capital to 1) make grid investments, 2) deploy off-grid technologies, 3) install embedded generation & storage capacity, and 4) integrate cutting-edge information and operational technology in our technology platform. We’ve been working with the Nigerian Government and Kaduna Electric to bring this vision to life and have made progress on attracting commercial investment from Climate Fund Managers as our anchor partners on this early journey.” The winning team was announced during the final ceremony of the Africa Energy Forum online at 12:30 GMT on 13 th November 2020. Interview enquiries: Media contact: amy@energynet.co.uk Learn more about AfDB: https://www.afdb.org/en Learn more about Konexa: https://www.konexa.io/
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Africa Energy Forum: IPP Office Head Tshifhiwa Bernard Magoro and Eskom CEO André de Ruyter to co-chair energy roundtable with investors

For the first time, Eskom CEO André de Ruyter and Tshifhiwa Bernard Magoro, Head of South Africa’s IPP Office will Co-Chair an intimate boardroom on 2 nd November during the Africa Energy Forum.

Programme Director of the Forum Shiddika Mohamed commented, “The pair have been in discussion for a number of weeks about the meeting, and have stressed how important it is to sit down together with investors to discuss how this relationship will work in the coming years. The past months have seen a significant shift in relations between the two sector stakeholders, with Eskom coming out in full support of the regulators’ approval of the IPP Office’s 11.5GW Round Five procurement programme. This move came directly from the Eskom CEO who continues to address the challenges faced by the national utility with clear messaging.” The boardroom on 2 nd November is an opportunity for both leaders to sit down with investors and discuss how the relationship will move forward. This boardroom will be moderated by John Smelcer, Business Development Director at Globeleq, and is chaired by both the IPP Office Head and Eskom CEO, who welcome alongside them the leadership teams of both organisations. READ MORE >> Find out more Event: ESKOM & IPP Office Boardroom at the Africa Energy Forum Time and Date: Monday 2nd November | 12:00 GMT Please note: Due to the nature of this boardroom and to enable an inclusive dialogue, this session is limited in numbers Attendee registration: https://bit.ly/3iblExl Media Registration: https://bit.ly/3mzdYru Media Enquiries: Amy Offord | amy@energynet.co.uk
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Africa Energy Forum and AFSIA celebrate winners in 15 categories during the AFSIA Solar Awards 2020

The winners of the Africa Solar Industry Association (AFSIA) Solar Awards 2020 were unveiled during first-of-its kind online event

The inaugural AFSIA Solar Awards, organized in partnership with the Africa Energy Forum (aef), culminated in a grand show streamed online on 29 th October. During this ceremony, the winners of 15 categories were unveiled and celebrated. More than 130 entries were submitted across the different categories from all over the continent over the past few months. The Jury, composed of leading experts in solar energy in Africa, have carefully evaluated each entry to identify the most deserving companies and individuals to be awarded the grand prize during this online ceremony. Among the 15 categories in competition this year, the most disputed titles included “C&I Project of the Year” and “Mini-Grid Project of the Year”, which is reflective of the increased activity of both of these segments of the African solar industry. “Woman in Solar of the Year” has also been particularly popular among participants. This highlights the very positive trend of the growing involvement of women in the solar industry across the continent. Click Here to view Winners >> An exceptional and global platform The awards ceremony was organized in collaboration with aef and was conducted online. This year, aef joined forces with the African Utility Week & POWERGEN Africa plus Oil & Gas Council’s Africa Assembly this October to host a ‘Digital Africa Energy Festival’ - the largest ever energy event for the African continent. John van Zuylen, Founder of AFSIA, commented; “AFSIA Solar Awards is delighted to be hosted by this much respected programme and to unveil the winners during a digital ceremony on October 29th. The event was organized as a great show celebrating exceptional achievement in the solar industry and hosted several African personalities such as Ndumiso Lindi, the host of the awards, and the African band and dance troupe ‘Les Merveilles de Guinee’ who gave a thrilling performance. Several leaders of the global industry such as Huawei, Trina Solar and Jinko Solar also provided their support to make this a truly exceptional event.” Meet the jury Applications to the AFSIA Solar Awards were evaluated by some of the most experienced professionals of the African solar industry. These experts reviewed every application independently and selected the best ones in each category. This year the jury was composed of Eng. Lamya Abdel Hady, Head of Sector Private Projects, EETC (Egypt), Bah F.M. Saho, Executive Director, ECREEE (Cape Verde), Jo Dean, Board Member, SAPVIA (South Africa), Jasandra Nyker Managing Director, Denham Capital (South Africa), Aaron Leopold, CEO, AMDA - Africa Minigrid Developers Association (Kenya), Linda Munyengeterwa, Regional Industry Director for Infrastructure, IFC (South Africa), Izael Da Silva, PhD, Deputy Vice-Chancellor - Research and Innovation Department, Strathmore University (Kenya) and Simon Gosling, Managing Director, EnergyNet (UK).  
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Exclusive: World’s first long-range wireless transmission project to be presented at Africa Energy Forum

"Emrod's wireless system is a cost-effective solution for transmitting power across difficult terrain."

The Africa Energy Forum will host a special presentation on 21 st October at 9am (UK time) by EMROD CEO and Founder Greg Kushnir, demonstrating the world’s first ever long-range wireless transmission project, currently operating in New Zealand.

EMROD has developed the world’s first commercially viable long-range, high-power, wireless power transmission as an alternative to existing copper line technology. Emrod’s technology works by utilising electromagnetic waves to safely and efficiently transmit energy wirelessly over vast distances. “Being able to transmit high-power electricity without any cables is game-changing for the continent. It means barriers to energy-access are smashed and Africa could be fully electrified within ten years. This is the technology millions of people have been waiting for.” Simon Gosling, Managing Director, EnergyNet The company was founded by serial tech entrepreneur Greg Kushnir, who was determined to find a technology that can reduce power distribution costs, avoid outages and support renewable energy. “We have an abundance of clean hydro, solar, and wind energy available around the world but there are costly challenges that come with delivering that energy using traditional methods, for example, offshore wind farms or the Cook Strait here in New Zealand requiring underwater cables which are expensive to install and maintain,” said Mr Kushnir. “I wanted to come up with a solution to move all that clean energy around from where it’s abundant to where it’s needed in a cost-effective, eco-friendly way.” Energy generation and storage methods have progressed tremendously over the last century but energy transmission has remained virtually unchanged since Edison, Siemens, and Westinghouse first introduced electric networks based on copper wires 150 years ago.” By significantly reducing infrastructure costs, Emrod’s technology has the capacity to support remote communities such as in Africa and the Pacific Islands by providing access to cheap, sustainable energy to power schools, hospitals and economies. “The data is compelling. We are talking about a potential 50 per cent increase in sustainable energy uptake, up to 85 per cent reduction in outages and up to 65 per cent reduction in electricity infrastructure costs due to the Emrod solution,” said Kushnir. ''Since announcing Emrod's technology we have had a high level of interest from energy distribution and engineering companies from across the globe. We are progressing with some exciting opportunities to improve energy access for remote communities in areas such as India, Africa and Island Nations'', added Kushnir. The company has achieved strong interest from electricity distributors with Powerco, New Zealand’s second-largest distributor deciding to invest in a proof of concept of the technology currently operational. Kushnir commented; “The system we are currently building for Powerco will transmit a few kilowatts but we can use the exact same technology to transmit 100 times more power over much longer distances. Wireless systems using Emrod technology can transmit any amount of power current wired solutions transmit.” More information about this session: Event name: Africa Energy Forum 2020 (online) Event dates: 20 th October – 13 th November 2020 Session date & time: 21 st October, 09:00 (UK time/GMT) Register: https://bit.ly/30YFJ4g
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