Although Côte d’Ivoire’s electricity grid is relatively expansive, the country’s average access rate is only 62 percent, with rural areas at only 31 percent. Household connection is low because of the prohibitive cost associated with connection. At the same time, the demand for productive use energy is increasing because of growth in the mining and manufacturing sectors. With ambitious plans, Côte d’Ivoire aims to have 99 percent of its population covered by the grid with 42 percent of energy coming from renewable sources by 2035.
Our Solution & Impact:
Themis Group, an Africa-focused power company, recently announced construction of the 44-MW Singrobo Hydropower Project with financing from Denham Capital, a global energy and resources private equity firm. In December 2017, the City and County of San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System (SFERS) approved a $100 million investment into Denham Capital’s International Power Fund. With over US$8.5 billion of invested or committed capital across nine funds, Denham’s fund primarily focuses on power projects in Africa and other emerging markets.
From 2017 to 2019, the U.S. Government sponsored investor delegations to Africa to educate U.S. institutional investors about the continent’s investment opportunities. Leona Bridges, then Commissioner and Chair of the SFERS Investment Committee and now President of SFERS’s Board, was part of a group of 17 trustees, executive directors, and chief investment officers from U.S. pensions, foundations, and endowments who participated in the infrastructure investment focused delegation to South Africa in May 2017. The delegation met with and attended presentations by a dozen infrastructure and private equity fund managers, including one by Justin DeAngelis, Partner at Denham Capital.
On track to be operational by 2023, Singrobo is the first hydro independent power project in West Africa. By offering low-cost, reliable energy, Singrobo will spur economic development while creating social impact.
“We are proud to have worked with Themis and its partners to provide long-term sustainable and affordable renewable power to the region. Like other Denham power projects across Africa and globally, Singrobo will have a significant economic and social impact via low-cost, reliable power and the creation of local jobs while supporting the country’s energy transition.”
Scott Mackin Denham Capital
* In 2016, the United States Agency for International Development partnered with the National Association of Securities Professionals to launch the MiDA initiative. From 2017 to 2019, the grant-funded initiative ran investor delegations to Africa and held conferences to educate U.S. institutional investors about Africa’s investment opportunities. Upon the initiative’s conclusion, its principals formed MiDA Advisors, a U.S.-based advisory firm that focuses on increasing U.S. institutional investments in African infrastructure and markets.