Azuri Solar Home Systems have a significant impact on customers' lives and the environment, eliminating the hazards of kerosene lamps and providing modern services for rural consumers, including lighting, radio, TV, and smartphone charging. Working with leading local partners and a network of in-field agents, Azuri delivers a high-quality experience, from the initial product installation to on-going personal support to its customers as they make their repayments.
Energizing Rural Africa
Azuri has used mobile technology to turn a development challenge into a business challenge through its Azuri solar home systems, which allow users to pay for solar power on a pay-as-you-go basis, just like they do for their phones and kerosene. This provides clean, safe renewable power to families at about half the cost of the kerosene it replaces, without the need for any government subsidies or tariffs. Azuri’s HQ is in Cambridge, United Kingdom, with staff based in Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Ethiopia and Tanzania and presence in 11 countries across sub Saharan Africa.
Azuri's dedication to product quality and on-going improvement has ensured its distinctive position in the market. Founded in 2012, Azuri's HQ is located in Cambridge, (U.K.), with substantial regional offices in Africa, including our East African HQ in Nairobi and our West African HQ in Lagos.
Azuri has a touchpoint once a week with customers when they add credit to their Azuri unit. A sophisticated cloud-based distribution management system not only allows technicians to monitor in real time customer status information but also provides access to training and systems information in real time from a computer or phone.
Azuri works with an ecosystem of distributors, service agents, installers and local entrepreneurs comprising an end-to-end value chain that incentivizes all actors to ensure the systems work for the customers. In this way, Azuri delivers local employment in the community, allowing local partners and entrepreneurs to be able to grow a profitable and sustainable business within their community.
Azuri’s entry-level PayGo solar home system provides 8 hours of clean lighting each day and the opportunity to charge mobile phones at home. After paying a small one-off installation fee for their Azuri system, the user then uses an integrated mobile money service to top-up their unit. Importantly, this top-up is priced to cost less than their current weekly spend on kerosene and phone charging, so customers start making savings straight away.
Azuri's unique approach to technology has received a range of accolades including the Gold Edison Award for HomeSmart™, the first use of artificial intelligence in small domestic Solar Home Systems, the UNFCCC Climate Change Award, and the World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer Award.
A customer purchases credit through a mobile money service either once a week or once a month, and tops up their unit from a T-Code received via text message. This keeps the Azuri system fully functional and in-credit, preventing the unit from shutting off. Over the course of typically 18 months, the purchase of top-ups allows the system to be paid off and the customer can choose to either unlock their Azuri system forever or upgrade to a larger model.
Each day after sunset, thousands of rural small business owners are forced to close due to the lack of electricity, or choose to remain open by using harmful kerosene lamps or expensive battery lighting products.
Azuri is bringing a level of appropriate infrastructure to rural entrepreneurs, which in turn benefits the whole community. Rural stall-holders are able to open for more hours after sunset with an Azuri solar system, enabling them to boosts product sales. These stallholders become one of the only points in the community with reliable lighting at night, whilst empowering female retailers and enhancing safety and visibility after dark.
Azuri is also building African entrepreneurs and helping them to grow sustainable and self-supporting commercial businesses, creating economic growth at the local level.
In June-July 2014, Planète d’Entrepreneurs conducted an independent Social Impact Study on Azuri’s 2-light PayGo Solar home system in Western Kenya. Findings revealed the pride that customers feel in being able to provide a lighting source for their children to study. Customers also noted the money they save by charging their mobile phones at home. 86% of Indigo customers claimed that they have been able to work more since installing Azuri’s system. They also save 2.3 hours per week on travelling to purchase kerosene or charge their mobile phones.
- Africa | East
- Africa | West
Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Ethiopia, Tanzania