Clean Energy Solutions to Telecom Towers in Nigeria
WATT Renewable Corporation is an independent producer of clean energy solutions to telecom towers and financial service providers with operations currently focused in Nigeria. The team provides energy-related products and services that build infrastructure and drive economic growth in emerging communities. As part of their mission, the company designs, builds, owns, and operates renewable energy projects, which include replacing diesel generators with hybrid solar systems.
In 2019 WATT signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Pan African Towers (PAT), Nigeria’s third largest telecommunications infrastructure company, to provide solar hybrid solutions to 375 of the company’s 1,000 telecoms sites. Given Nigeria’s push to transition to renewable energy, PAT has an urgent mandate to convert its existing sites. WATT managed to execute 112 sites utilizing shareholder equity, and in 2021, they secured €7 million in debt funding to complete the deployment of 135 additional sites from Trine, a crowdfunding platform for people to invest in solar energy in growing markets. Trine, however, was facing delays due to COVID-19 and internal transitions, which resulted in funding delays that impacted WATT.
Open Road’s Response
WATT requested a loan from Open Road to cover the equipment procurement deposits required, so there were no further delays in completing their project. In May 2022, Open Road provided a loan of $500,000, which enabled WATT to pay all necessary deposits to procure equipment and receive the first two tranches approved by Trine.
The Open Road loan enabled WATT to continue delivering on the PAT project milestones and bring the company closer to its mandated energy transition goals. As the project continues, WATT Renewables is providing a stable power supply to telecom towers, allowing people to stay connected and businesses to expand. In addition, they are creating employment in the communities they serve and aim to be an employer of choice. By introducing solar into the energy mix for telecom towers, WATT Renewables is reducing reliance on fossil fuels and displacing 14,200 tons of CO2 per year. Annually, they have been able to save 1.4 million liters of diesel.