India: Inspired Evolution-led group invests $41m in solar products maker d.light

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d.light Design Inc., a San Francisco-based solar lighting and power products company with operations in India, has raised $41 million in equity financing from a consortium led by Inspired Evolution, an Africa-focused investment advisory firm.

Other members in the consortium include Dutch Development Bank FMO, as well as government-sponsored investment funds Swedfund and Norfund, the company said in a statement on Monday.

The latest funding brings the total amount of equity and debt that d.light has raised in the past two years to over $100 million. The funding round also enabled some of the company’s earliest investors to achieve an exit, it added.

The new equity funding will enable d.light to expand and accelerate its growth rate as well as provide energy access to millions of people in Africa.

Commenting on the investment from Inspired Evolution, d.light co-founder and CEO Ned Tozun said, “Their energy expertise and strong network add significant value to the work of d.light, allowing us to expand our product line, launch in new markets, and reach more customers.”

Through five distribution hubs in East Africa, West Africa, India, Southeast Asia, and the United States, d.light claims to have provided solar energy to more than 88 million people in 62 countries. Its product line ranges from portable solar lanterns to solar home systems that have the ability to power multiple lights, mobile phones, and small appliances, including a flat-screen television.

Wayne Keast, Managing Partner at Inspired Evolution, said, “We are excited to partner with d.light, the market leader in the portable solar product and off-grid solar home system market, to support the expansion of their Pay-Go solar business throughout Africa which will help address the needs of more than 600 million people that do not have access to electricity.”

Inspired Evolution, with offices in Cape Town, London, Nairobi and Mauritius, advises two investment funds, Evolution One and Evolution II. Its investment territory covers the sub-Saharan African region.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.