LMD funding database

According to the GDC’s 2019 Last Mile Distribution: State of the sector report, last mile distributors (LMDs) have been surprisingly successful in accessing external financial support, given their small size. 86% of LMDs surveyed had raised grant funding, 69% had raised debt funding, 41% had raised equity funding – while 28% had raised all three types of capital.

Yet, most equity and debt had come from family, friends, angel investors, crowdfunders, or founders themselves; and access to finance is still consistently cited as GDC members’ top priority and challenge. The longer-term, larger-scale commercial financing needed for growth-stage companies is also not widely available. For more insights on this important topic, see our 2021 research: ‘The growth and fundraising journeys of LMDs‘.

Below are the donors, investors and lenders who have provided various forms of finance to GDC members. If you know of others, let us know!

Fund Name

Type

Size

Sectors

Geography

Application

Examples of GDC investees

Debt or equity

$250k-3m

All

East Africa, West Africa, India, Pakistan, Latin America, or the United States.

Open (through referrals)

Easy Solar, Solaris Off-grid, Simusolar, Tulaa

Grants or repayable grants

Depends on the competition

Clean energy

Sub-Saharan Africa

Several windows a year

Inyenyeri, Vitalite Zambia, Zonful Energy

Debt

$50k-500k

All

Latin America and South East Asia

Open

Ecofiltro, Ilumexico, Sistema.bio, Nazava, ATEC*

Debt (crowdfunded)

€100k-2.5m

Positive environmental impact

Borrower registered in Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Germany, Austria, Bulgaria, Singapore.

Open

Vitalite Senegal, Bonergie, Bidhaa Sasa, WidEnergy Africa Ltd, Pawame

Debt (crowdfunded)

£10k-£250k

Energy access, including clean cooking

Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia 

Open

Solibirum

Grants

Depends on the competition

Clean cooking

Global

Several windows a year

Potential Energy, Bidhaa Sasa, UpEnergy, Livelyhoods

Grants, debt and equity

€25k-250k

Sustainable energy, circular entrepreneurship

East Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Uganda) and India

Open

Pollinate Group, Inyeneri, Jiro-Ve, Offgrid Box, Shine, Simusolar, Sistema.bio

Grants

up to $20k

All

Global

Bi-annual competition

Altech, Mukuru Clean Stoves, Endurance Electric, Harness Energy, Deevabits Green Energy, Livelyhoods, Essmart

Debt (unrestricted capital)

$300k

All

Global

Open

Solar Sister, Pollinate Group, Livelyhoods

Grants

$200k-1m

Clean energy

Southern and East Africa

Annual calls

Inyenyeri, Livelyhoods, Solarworks!, Vitalite Zambia, Mukuru Clean Stoves, Offgrid Box, Sistema.bio, Zonful Energy

Equity

€100k-1m (minority stake)

Household energy, clean cooking

Sub-Saharan Africa

Open

Ilumexico, Sistema.bio, ATEC*

Equity

$150k-500k

Energy access and clean cookingEnergy access and clean cooking

Global (sub-Saharan Africa preference)

Open

Easy Solar, UpOwa, Solaris Off-grid, Oolu, Hybrid Social Solutions

Debt

$100k-1.5mil

All

South Africa, Zambia, Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan and Oman

Open

Debt (crowdfunded)

$1-500k

All

Global

Open

Bidhaa Sasa, Solar Solutions PNG, Hydrologic Social Enterprise Co. Ltd, EcoGen, Livelyhoods, Ilumexico, Solubrite, ATEC*, Nazava, Vitalite, Zonful, Rent to Own, Soluz Honduras

Debt (crowdfunded, tranche-based credit facility)

€1.5m-5m

Renewable energy, Sustainable agriculture

Global

Open

upOwa, SolarWorks!, Sistema.bio, Vitalite, Oolu, Simusolar, Altech

Debt (uncollateralized)

$100K–500K

Sustainable Energy, Clean Water, Clean Cooking, Improved Sanitation

Southeast Asia. Focus countries: Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia, Cambodia, Laos

Open

Patient capital

$50-400k

All

Predominantly East Africa and India

Open

Sistema.bio, Nazava

Early stage equity

$50k-500k (also invests human capital alongside financial capital)

Energy access

Sub-Saharan Africa

Open

Oolu Solar, Solarworks!, upOwa, Zonful Energy

Grants

$2.5k-15k

All

All

Open

Energy One Africa

Grant (for SEED awardees only)

~$25k

WASH, agriculture, clean energy

Ghana, India, Indonesia, Malawi, South Africa, Thailand, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe

Annual awards scheme

Green Impact Technologies, SPOUTS of Water, Kukula Solar, Pollinate Group, Solar Sister, Natfort Energy, Sunny Money

Debt

Off-grid solar (Angaza customers only)

Global

Open

Altech Group, Deevabits Green Energy, Easy Solar

Debt

$250k-5m

Off-grid solar

Sub-Saharan Africa and India

Open

SolarWorks!

Grants

$100k-5m

All (innovations)

Global

Open

Essmart, Elephant Energy, Tulaa, Nafa Naana, Potential Energy and Solar Sister

Grants

Max $250k

Agribusiness, off-grid energy, social entrepreneurship (African-owned, African-led enterprises only)

Africa

Several windows a year

Sky Power, Ecobora, M&NDA Company, Natfort Energy

Equity

Early stage capital

Off-grid solar

Africa

Energy+

.

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