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$3,701 Total funding received
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SUMMARY

There are 1.3 billion people in the world living in energy poverty, that is, without access to electricity. The challenge in addressing this problem isn’t one of technology, the real challenge is getting the technologies to the people who need them. Pollinate Energy fills this gap. We train and empower local entrepreneurs (‘Pollinators’) to establish micro-businesses that provide clean energy solutions to India's urban slums. Pollinators go door-to-door in slum communities, selling, installing and servicing solar lights. We provide customers with lines of credit, to ensure these products are affordable to people who live on less than $2 a day. 

IMPACT 

People who live in energy poverty depend on kerosene lamps for lighting. Kerosene is toxic; it causes respiratory illnesses, creates a fire hazard in the home, is expensive and produces a very weak light that children can’t study by. Kerosene also emits black carbon, which is 800 times more harmful to the environment than CO2. By transitioning urban slum dwellers from kerosene to solar, we remove a significant financial burden (customers save on average 5% of their annual income), and provide a healthier living environment with improved quality of life. Children can study, families are safer without the naked kerosene flame, and women are less at risk walking home at night. By employing Pollinators to distribute our products, we empower local entrepreneurs and provide them with better income opportunities. 

OUR CHIVAS VENTURE EXPERIENCE

My experience with the Chivas Venture was a whole lot more than a shot at winning funding. I loved the Accelerator Week in the UK because it gave me a chance to really deep dive into my business. We had panels on investor perspectives with leading venture capitalists and impact investing firms. There was also one-on-one training with business management and growth experts to dissect our value proposition, and develop more compelling ways to present our financial and growth projections. Finally, we also received pitch training from world-class public speakers and storytellers. But the biggest highlight of The Chivas Venture was meeting and engaging with the other finalists. I was blown away by the innovativeness of the ideas, the boldness of their visions and the commitment that all the entrepreneurs bring to their businesses.

WHAT'S NEXT

We’ve recently launched operations in our fourth city, Lucknow. Over the next 12 months we’ll continue to grow our product portfolio to include at least three more impactful products – we’re currently trialling mosquito nets and solar mobile phone chargers – and we will expand into two more cities in India. Over the next five years, we aim to scale our business across 20 cities in India, bringing our life-changing products to more than a million people living in India’s urban slums.

We’ve recently launched operations in our fourth city, Lucknow. Over the next 12 months we’ll continue to grow our product portfolio to include at least three more impactful products – we’re currently trialling mosquito nets and solar mobile phone chargers – and we will expand into two more cities in India. Over the next five years, we aim to scale our business across 20 cities in India, bringing our life-changing products to more than a million people living in India’s urban slums.