August 31 (Solar) – Dutch development bank FMO on Thursday said it has led a USD-15.5-million (EUR 13.3m) financing package for Kingo that will allow the off-grid solar firm to expand its services to around 250,000 people in rural parts of Guatemala.
Kingo currently serves more than 300,000 people and the new finance will see it reach a total of 550,000.
The seven-year loan includes USD 5 million from FMO, USD 5 million from social impact investor Oikocredit and a USD-5.5-million subordinated loan from the Infrastructure Development Fund, now run by FMO. Kingo will use it for organisational growth and for the acquisition and installation of solar rooftop panels, which take place in 2018 and early 2019.
According to the announcement, in Guatemala rural areas the electrification rate is 40%. Kingo provides solar panel, battery light bulbs and USB-port on a full service rental basis to its customers, who can buy hours, weeks or months of energy services by from local shopkeepers. The latter provide a code to unlock the device.
Set up in Guatemala in 2013, Kingo has already raised USD 25 million in equity and debt rounds. In April, American actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio made an investment of an undisclosed amount in the company.
(USD 1 = EUR 0.856)