The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and Shell Foundation (the UK-registered charity) have announced a new collaboration that will promote renewable energy uptake in low-income areas of Africa and Asia. The collaboration aims to improve gender inclusion and to bring affordable renewable energy to more than 5 million people in these regions.

According to an MoU signed between them, the collaboration will support the growth of social enterprises that deliver essential renewable energy services in offgrid and remote regions. These enterprises often cater to people living on $2 to $10 a day so as to enhance income, education, health, and women’s economic empowerment. This collaboration will address the issue of finance for innovative small and medium-sized enterprises especially those owned by women.

Shell Foundation aims to build a pipeline of distributed renewable energy focused business that cater to offgrid regions and plans to deploy more than $45 million grant funding by 2025. Meanwhile, DFC hopes to approve up to $100 million early-stage debt and equity to support the growth of these businesses and leverage capital for further scale.

America’s development bank, DFC, launched its inaugural development strategy in 2020 called the Roadmap for Impact. This aims to bring energy access to at least 10 million people and deploy $2 billion towards the distributed renewables sector by 2025. Established in 2000, Shell Foundation is a UK-registered charity which creates and scales business solutions to promote renewable energy uptake and affordable transport for low-income communities in Africa and Asia.