Planet Investment Banking, a regional investment bank founded by leading professionals from the MENA finance industry, has joined a group of prominent Egyptian and Arab investors and leading German renewable energy service provider, Solarpraxis, to form Emerging Power NV. Planet Investment Banking will hold a controlling equity stake in the new joint venture, which is investing a total of USD 200 million in African solar power projects.
Emerging Power is currently in the process of establishing a 100 MW solar plant in Uganda and an 80 MW plant in Kenya.
“The development of solar power in Africa is crucial. The new solar plants that we are developing will use cutting-edge German technology to provide much needed electricity to consumers in Kenya and Uganda,” said Ahmed El Houssieny, Chief Executive Officer of Planet Investment Banking.
The demand for electricity in Sub-Saharan Africa vastly outweighs the supply. In Kenya alone there is a growth in electricity demand of 5-8% per annum. In addition to addressing the electricity deficit, the construction of solar plants will also provide a viable alternative to the hydroelectric dams that are being built across the channels that source the Nile River. Egypt has vehemently contested the construction of dams in Ethiopia and Uganda in fear that they could reduce the amount of Egypt’s share of Nile water.
Solarpraxis is a Berlin-based company with extensive technical and engineering experience in the field of renewable energy. The company’s experts will assure that Emerging Power’s solar power plants adhere to the highest global technical specifications.
According to Houssieny, Emerging Power’s goal is to become the leading solar power player in emerging markets with a targeted capacity of 1GW by 2018.