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Solad and Arizona State University announce innovative partnership to scale up feasibility studies for mini-grids

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Solad

Solad Power Group, one of Nigeria’s leading distributed energy solutions providers, has agreed to a partnership with Arizona State University (ASU) to utilise the university’s proprietary artificial intelligence data platform to assess mini-grid projects in Nigeria quickly and efficiently.

As a participant in the World Bank-supported Rural Electrification Agency (REA) Mini-Grid programme, Solad is rolling out solar solutions to markets across Nigeria. The Company has a near-term pipeline of 12 priority projects. The partnership with ASU’s Laboratory For Energy And Power Solutions (LEAPS) enables the accelerated deployment of 25 new sites. Data will be collected through LEAPS’ existing partnerships with YouthMappers and Nigerian universities, whose students will deepen their knowledge of and exposure to distributed energy solutions.

Mini-grid companies must conduct site feasibility studies before they can design and install a project. This is often a limited but protracted process built on insufficient data from short site visits, which can compromise the outcome. Solad is focused on leveraging the latest technology to enhance its feasibility assessments using global satellite imagery, AI-aided mapping models and advanced power engineering software.

Commenting on the alliance, Solad’s Chairman Constantine ‘Labi Ogunbiyi said: 

Dr. Nathan Johnson, Director of ASU LEAPS, remarks about the importance of innovation and partnerships: 

Solad focuses on under-served segments of the energy market, prioritising support for the millions of market traders who struggle with access to unreliable or prohibitively expensive energy solutions. SMEs make up 96% of all businesses operating in Nigeria, contributing nearly 50% of GDP and providing 84% of all jobs in the country. They consistently reference access to electricity as the single most important obstacle that they face. With Lagos alone having a population of 20 million people, the opportunity set is huge. Solad already has 10,000 existing small business customers and an expansion programme that targets an additional 20,000 businesses within 2 years.

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