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At the Africa Energy Forum (aef), Konexa was announced the winner of the African Utility of the Future award, receiving US$5,000 in prize money.
The competition, organised by the African Development Bank and aef, 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 devise innovative, realistic, practical and implementable ideas to ‘leap-frog’ 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 five pillars of sustainable utility operation as defined by the African Development Bank (AfDB).
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 of the power systems development division at AfDB, said, “The bank in partnership with EnergyNet is happy to announce the winner of the African Utility of the Future 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 are 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 make grid investments, deploy off-grid technologies, install embedded generation & storage capacity, and integrate cutting-edge information and operational technology in our technology platform. We have 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 on 13 November 2020.