British International Investment

M-Kopa Ltd.

East AfricaFinancial services

M-Kopa is Africa’s leading connected asset financing provider, selling a diversified range of devices including smartphones, digital financial services such as cash loans and solar home systems in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria and Ghana. Its products are sold through a “pay-as-you go” (“PAYG”) model, requiring clients to pay an initial deposit followed by daily instalments via mobile money. As of today, the company has over 1 million active customers.

This investment was made when British International Investment was named CDC Group.

We have now exited this investment. This is what we achieved.

Achieved impact

This information will appear shortly

Expected impact

We first invested in M-Kopa Kenya Limited in 2017 as part of a $55 million local currency debt financing facility alongside Stanbic, FMO and Norfund across Kenya and Uganda. This was a landmark deal in the off-grid energy sector, being the largest commercial local currency debt facility to date for a pay-as-you-go company. Since then we have provided further local currency debt financing, to continue helping the business to grow. This facility was refinanced and BII rolled over US$5m into the new facility.

Impact information

Applies to investments made from 2019 onwards. The tabs in this section define what we expect to achieve through the investment, assessing the potential impact of the investment against six dimensions of impact. You can find more details on our methodology of assessing impact here.

What?

Impact
  • Improve quality of life by extending access to affordable, reliable and modern financial services and energy services (SDGs 7.1, 7.2 and 1.4).
  • Improve quality of life by extending access to mobile ICT and the internet (SDG 9C).

How?

How?

Our investment will finance sales growth by providing debt capital to fund M-KOPA’s PAYGo phones product, enabling more affordable access to smartphones and mobile internet.

Our investment will help to finance sales growth, by providing debt capital to fund M-KOPA’s receivables book for PAYGo solar home system products, enabling more affordable access to energy services and unbanked customers to establish credit histories.

Who?

Stakeholder Geography Characteristics
Consumers (mobile phones)

Kenya

Mobile phone customers are mostly peri-urban/rural consumers earning a median daily income of KES 395 ($3.60). Average income for customers previously owning a feature phone is $3 per day while those previously owning a smartphone earn on average $4.50 a day.

Consumers (cash loans)

Kenya

Consumers (solar home systems)

Kenya

Solar home system consumers are peri-urban/rural consumers earning a median daily income of KES 18,000 ($5.40). 80 per cent of current solar customers are low-income, earning $2-3 per day.

How much?

Scale Depth/Duration

The most recent investment will reach 5,896,000 new phone customers.

In addition, it will reach 28,700 new households through solar home system sales. This would bring total households with new energy access to 983,000.

Further, as of 2022, M-KOPA will also reach customers through its cash loan product. We expect to reach 693,300 cash loan customers.

Expected to be deep as 60 per cent of phone customers are accessing mobile internet for the first time and 80 per cent of M-KOPA’s PAYGo solar home system customers did not previously have electricity access, and

Contribution/additionality

Contribution/additionality
  • Financial additionality: We are providing local currency debt financing, which is not available at scale as commercial lenders are reluctant to enter the nascent off-grid solar sector, and the cost of capital is often prohibitively expensive.
  • Market: The PAYG market remains nascent with the industry still pre-profit. PAYGo financing for phones is a new model with M-KOPA as the first mover but is expected to become increasingly competitive.

Risk

Execution Risk
  • Relates to the risk that a higher proportion of M-KOPA’s phone Customers will be existing smartphone users than expected, which will result in lower than predicted Depth of impact for Expanding access to mobile internet. Considered low risk Given that lower-income consumers are more likely to be targeted as the product line expands.
Execution Risk
  • Relates to the risk that M-KOPA is unable to expand its receivables portfolio across solar home system and phone product lines at the expected rate and thus deliver impact. This is directly correlated with commercial risk.

Reporting and Complaints Mechanism

The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism allows anyone outside BII to report alleged breaches of the business integrity or environmental and social provisions of BII’s Policy on Responsible Investing. This includes breaches made by BII, a BII investee, or a portfolio company of a fund in which BII has invested. The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism Rules are available here. Reports and complaints can be submitted by email to [email protected] or by mail. See more details on our Reporting and Complaints Mechanism here.

For any other general enquiries contact us at [email protected]

  • Key facts

    Last updated

    When the last quarterly update of the website database occurred.

    :
    June 2024
    Project number

    An identifier number shared by investments in the same project.

    :
    D2140
    Status

    The current status of the investment (green flag for active and red flag for exited).

    :
    Exited
    Region

    The geographical region where the country is located. We currently invest in Africa, South Asia, South East Asia and the Caribbean. In 2023, BII’s investment mandate was extended allowing it to invest in regional funds linked to Ukraine, with the majority of activity expected to begin post-war. Investments outside these regions were made prior to 2012 under previous investment mandates.

    :
    East Africa
    Country

    The countries where the investment delivers impact. Where impact is delivered in multiple countries, this is indicated.

    :
    Kenya
    Sector

    We prioritise those sectors that facilitate development and need our capital the most. Our priority sectors contribute towards many of the Sustainable Development Goals. They range from investing in the power infrastructure that will provide people with better access to electricity, to investing in financial institutions that direct capital to the individuals and businesses that need it the most.

    :
    Financial services

    We provide capital in the following ways: directly – through direct equity, direct debt, guarantees and other non-intermediated financial instruments; and indirectly – principally through investment funds.

    For direct investments and fund investments, this is the date BII committed capital to the investments. This is typically the date on which legal agreements are signed by all parties.

    For the portfolio companies of our fund investments, this is the date (either the month or the quarter) on which the fund committed capital to the portfolio company.

    For direct equity investments, this is the date at which British International Investment exited the investment.

    For debt investments, this is the date at which the final debt repayment was made.

    For funds, this is the date at which the fund was terminated.

    For underlying fund investments, this is the date at which the fund manager exited the investment.

    The total amount committed, per financial instrument, per investment, on the date BII becomes subject to a binding legal obligation to provide funding or assume a contingent liability. This information is provided in US dollars.

    For direct investments, this is the amount that BII has committed to the business or project. For fund investments, this is the amount BII has committed to the fund.

    The currency in which the investment was made.

    Investment type :
    Debt
    Start date :
    April 2021
    End date :
    February 2023
    Amount :
    $1.99m
    Currency of investment :
    KES
    Domicile

    The company or investment fund’s place of incorporation.

    :
    Kenya
    Climate finance type:
    Mitigation

Related investments made by BII into this company:

Investment name Commitment Region Sector Start date Status
Investment 01 $18m East Africa Financial services June 2017 Exited
Investment 03 $4.93m East AfricaEast Africa Financial services December 2022 Active

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