June 4 (Renewables Now) - Marubeni Corp (TYO:8002) has agreed to buy a stake in Africa-focused solar home systems provider Azuri Technologies Ltd, the Japanese trader announced on Monday.
The deal marks Marubeni’s entry into the solar home systems business for off-grid areas in Africa. The Japanese firm did not disclose the size of the stake it has purchased, but noted it makes it the largest shareholder of Azuri.
UK-based Azuri provides solar home systems, including photovoltaic (PV) panels, batteries and LED lights to off-grid consumers in Kenya, Tanzania and other African countries. Those services are offered through mobile payment instalments, known as the pay-as-you-go model.
The transaction complements Marubeni’s investment in Wassha Inc, a Tokyo-based company distributing renewable energy to off-grid areas in Tanzania, in 2018. Its future plans include leveraging synergies between the local networks owned by Azuri and Wassha and its own capabilities so as to offer power to areas with no access to electricity.