Providing Safe Energy Sources to Developing Nations

Safe and reliable sources of energy aid most basic daily functions. Electric light, mobile phone charging, fans, radios, television, and Internet access are all amenities afforded by energy. E+Co, a pioneer in impact investing, is helping to make these facilities more readily available in developing countries.

Through its fund manager Persistent Energy Partners, E+Co invests in innovative businesses that provide off-grid African households with affordable renewable energy. In the households reached, E+Co typically replaces kerosene, candles, and batteries - the current fuels used for lighting - and in doing so creates jobs, significantly improves indoor air quality, reduces fire hazards from kerosene use, and substantially improves the quantity and quality of light available. In addition to the positive economic impact to the communities in which E+Co invests, safety at night is enhanced as a result of its portable lights and street lighting solutions, and costly solid fuels are replaced by inexpensive, efficient clean energy, significantly reducing carbon dioxide and black carbon emissions, which are potent drivers of climate change.

Together with colleagues from several of our non-U.S. offices, lawyers in our Denver office have assisted E+Co and Persistent Energy Partners in connection with numerous acquisitions, dispositions, joint ventures, debt and equity investments, restructurings, loan workouts, and enforcement actions in Tanzania, Ghana, and South Africa. Most recently, we represented E+Co in its acquisition of a high-growth solar distribution company in Ghana, and we are currently aiding E+Co in connection with negotiating a memorandum of understanding with the Government of Ghana, pursuant to which E+Co would receive governmental concessions to install solar-powered micro-grids to electrify rural villages across Ghana that are not connected, and have no near-term prospect of being connected, to the national electricity grid.

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