IFC and The Rockefeller Foundation (RF) are partnering to make strategic investments in distributed renewable energy (DRE) solutions, principally in Sub-Saharan Africa. Through an initial $25 million blended concessional finance facility (in addition to a $5 million contribution for upstream project development), the RF and IFC will be able to mitigate risk and aim to invest in high impact projects in frontier and emerging markets. This collaboration is part of both organizations' commitment to ending energy poverty and delivering reliable, sustainable power to millions across the world.
The $25 million blended finance facility falls under Phase I of the broader IFC-RF Memorandum of Understanding, which aims to deploy US$150 million of RF’s catalytic capital to mobilize up to $2 billion of private sector investments in the DRE sector. Phase I activities will provide a demonstrative effect for innovative approaches for DRE project development and resource mobilization. These innovations include IFC's prototype scaling mini-grid program which aims to develop a programmatic, replicable, and partnership-driven structuring solution to scale up the nascent mini-grid market in the Middle East and Africa. Other initiatives include DRE generation, battery energy storage, and other emerging clean energy technologies that facilitate access.
The complementary $5 million Upstream Facility will provide funding for early-stage project development which includes technical assistance, targeted feasibility studies, and cost-sharing support to private sector clients and governments. IFC's Upstream practice aims to create markets in the most challenging environments and lay the foundation for future investment projects.