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Egypt’s Solar Energy Company KarmSolar Secures $3 Million From HSBC

The new solar project is expected to become fully operational by Q3 2023.

Startup Scene

Egypt’s Solar Energy Company KarmSolar Secures $3 Million From HSBC

Egypt-based solar power company KarmSolar has secured $3 million in debt financing from HSBC to develop the Farafra Solar Grid. The new development is the company’s second solar grid after the Marsa Alam Solar Grid.

Founded in 2011 by Ahmed Zahran, Xavier Auclair, Yumna Madi and Randa Fahmy, KarmSolar provides numerous sectors in Egypt with renewable energy to expand the use of clean energy in the Egyptian market.

"The kickoff of the Farafra Solar Grid enables us to achieve our vision of extending affordable, reliable solar energy to relatively inaccessible parts of the country,” Ahmed Zahran, Co-Founder and CEO of KarmSolar, tells StartupScene. “It is very refreshing to see institutions like HSBC willing to focus their efforts and trust towards investing in nonconventional projects like the Farafra Solar Grid.”

According to the company, phase 1 of the project consists of a 3.4 MWp solar PV station, 3.7 MVA diesel generators, and a 4 MWh/1MW solar battery storage system. It is anticipated that the new project will provide 60% solar penetration, with the goal of reaching 100% in three years.

The new solar grid will mainly be used in the agricultural sector in the Farafra region, which mainly relies on diesel generator setups, to help bring down energy costs and reduce carbon footprint.

The company claims that the new grid will be the first of its kind microgrid solution that will use solar PV panels, battery storage system, and diesel generators in a centralized setup.  

Companies opting to use phase 1 of the project include Juhanya and Nawa for Agricultural Investment to date.

The financing of the Farafra Solar Grid follows KarmSolar’s recent funding of $2.4 million to deploy battery solutions in Egypt.

The new solar project is expected to become fully operational by Q3 2023.

Egypt is a leading startup ecosystem in MENA. Despite the global funding crunch of 2022, Egypt managed to surpass total funding received in 2021, recording 205% YoY growth compared to the previous year, according to data platform Magnitt. While fintech received the lion’s share of funding, cleantech is still considered a strong emerging sector with investors like British International Investments deploying $100 in local startups to support the country’s green growth, and Egypt initiating the ClimateTech Run competition during COP27 of up to $100k for startup-finalists.