M-KOPA III Solar Home System
A solar home system with integrated pay-as-you-go functionality.
M-KOPA Solar provides a technology platform that combines embedded GSM + mobile payments to enable solar home system financing. The M-KOPA III is a combined solar home system with PAYG functionality and end use appliances. Appliances include lights, a torch, radio and USB ports for device use.
M-KOPA is located in Nairobi, Kenya with additional operations in Uganda and Tanzania.
Countries: Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda
M-KOPA Solar distributes and implements the systems in a partnership with Safaricom.
$35 USD down payment plus $0.50 USD /day for 1 year (available in local currencies). The total price after the down payment and daily payments is ~ $218 USD.
Individuals, households and private sector businesses in East Africa are the target users of the M-KOPA products.
Patent Protected. The patent covers the PAYG functionality and mobile payment capability of M-KOPA systems.
The M-KOPA III has been replaced by the M-KOPA IV.
Users obtained the product from M-KOPA retail locations. M-KOPA relies on direct sales representatives, or agents of each retail location to manage sales. There are over 100 retail locations across the three M-KOPA target markets (Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania)
As of July 2016, 375,000 M-KOPA SHS units have been distributed. Of those units, roughly 75,000 are M-Kopa IV, 150,000 M-Kopa III and the remainder are the previous M-KOPA models. ^(interview with representative)
Mobile money (specify), cable, keypad or other.
Service required for the product to work [Mobile data, SMS, voice, Internet, other]
Remote diagnostics or monitoring available
2 LED lights with multiple brightness settings
1 LED portable solar torch light
5 standard USB ports
Portable solar radio
8 W solar panel
Customers can purchase system components individually to replace parts of their original system or to upgrade their system.
5 years with a 24 month warranty on the solar panel, control unit and light points and 12 month for torch, radio and charging cables interview with representative
Payback rate of 95% interview with representative
Lighting Global vetted the following parameters:
– Full battery run time and run time per day
– Total light output
– Lamp type
– Special features (mobile charging, radio, and pay as you go)
– Overall durability and quality standards tests (drop, soldering and electronics workmanship, mechanical, minimum warranty, performance reporting)
Be sure to follow proper electrical installation and control guidelines.
Ballesteros, A., et al., Implementation strategies for renewable energy services in low-income rural areas. Washington D.C.: World Resources Institute; 2013
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Nique, M., Smertnik, H., The synergies between mobile phone access and off grid energy solutions. Springer Proceedings in Energy. 2015 Mar 4;2015:185-193.
Hirmer, S., Cruickshank, H., The user-value of rural electrification: an analysis and adoption of existing models and theories. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews. 2014 Jun;24:145-154.
Harper, M., Review of strategies and technologies for demand-side management on isolated mini-grids. Arcata (CA): Humboldt State University; 2013 Mar
Rever, W.B., Mints, P.J., Remote markets 2.0: the next wave of PV expansion. PVSC. 2014 Jun 8-13;40:2556-3561.
Payback Rate and use patterns beyond the 1 year repayment period.
Video showcasing of M-Kopa distribution system and customer support
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