GreenMax Capital Advisors secured a $950,000 grant from the US Overseas Private Investment Corp. (OPIC). Under Africa Clean Energy Facility (ACEF), one of the Power Africa programs sponsored by the US, the capital will be used for Akiira One Ltd. (AOL) to support the final stages of project preparation for a 40-MW geothermal energy project.
The planned project will be constructed on land concessioned to AOL adjacent to the Olkaria geothermal fields, less than 100 km outside of Nairobi. The first phase of 40 MW will be followed by additional generation capacity totaling 140 MW. The grant will pay for a highly qualified set of international and Kenyan consultants to perform the final technical and legal work necessary to commence drilling for the geothermal resource early next year.
Robert Bunyi CEO of AOL, stated: “This grant is a major step in the implementation of the first fully commercially developed geothermal project in Kenya. While previous projects have benefited from early stage exploration and drilling funded by government and donors, AOL has tackled the steam field development with all its high risks, from scratch, entirely with private capital. Therefore the support of the US’ OPIC ACEF program is enormously valuable as a partnership with us to allow our risk capital to stretch a bit further and enable drilling to commence on schedule. GreenMax’s support has been invaluable in building our cooperation with OPIC and in finally securing the grant funding.”
Hezy Ram, CEO of Ram Energy Inc., a Wyoming based geothermal energy developer which is one of the founding shareholders of AOL, remarked, “We are grateful for the support of OPIC and the aggressive role that our government is playing to promote investment by American companies like ours in Africa’s clean energy sector. We believe Kenya offers strong opportunities for private investment in geothermal energy and a partnership with OPIC allows us to more effectively manage risks.”
Clifford J. Aron, President of GreenMax said, “We are delighted to be able to successfully arrange support for AOL through one of the cornerstone programs of President Obama’s Power Africa initiative. The US is providing valuable impetus for clean energy development in the power hungry nations of sub-Saharan Africa. GreenMax is proud to play a small role in helping Kenya meet its ambitious energy sector development goals.”
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