Frankfurt, (Germany) and Kigali, (Rwanda).
ARED, the African Renewable Energy Distributor, is a Rwandan company that has developed an innovative solar kiosk, the Mobile Shiriki Hub, to bring jobs and WIFI to the Streets of Africa. Developed with support from GreenTec Capital Partners, the Shiriki Hub is the cornerstone of a distributed proximity network that brings jobs, connectivity, and key services to African mobile device users.
Designed as a “business-in-a-box”, the kiosks provide solar powered device charging, mobile money and payments services, airtime sales, as well as digital content and services. The kiosks are designed mobile and rugged for the African context and are distributed on a franchise model to achieve broad geographic distribution. ARED promotes women’s entrepreneurship and aspires to reach a target of >75% female franchisees through providing subsidized franchisee fees for women and persons with disabilities. The kiosks are powered by powerful solar panels and equipped with custom designed hardware capable of providing connectivity services to up to 50 users within 100m of the kiosk. Each operating franchise represents one sustainable job with the potential to earn double the average Rwandan salary. Last year, ARED debuted its kiosks in Rwanda and is currently fund-raising to scale its impactful business model in Uganda and Rwanda and expand low-cost access to the internet.
To support its scaling efforts and to create more jobs, ARED is currently running a campaign through Bettervest GmbH, Germany’s leading crowdfunding platform focusing on renewable energy projects. This campaign is one of the first opportunities for individual retail investors to support one of GreenTec Capital’s impactful portfolio companies. ARED’s campaign is progressing quickly and the company has already raised more than €90,000 of its €250,000 goal from 130 investors, since starting last week. The funding raised will be utilized to mobilize 80 Shiriki Hubs to bring jobs, WIFI, and digital services to the Streets of Uganda and Rwanda. The project is expected to offset the equivalent of 350 tonnes of CO2 annually. Interested parties can participate with investments as little as €50. The project is planned for 7 years and investors will earn 8% per annum on their contributions to the campaign. To learn more about ARED’s project on Bettervest or to support the project with an investment, please visit Bettervest’s Website.