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A business model for success: Enterprises serving the base of the pyramid with off-grid solar lighting

Inara Scott

Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 2017, vol. 70, issue C, 50-55

Abstract: Basic electric service is essential to sustainable development, yet for remote rural areas, connecting to an electric grid can be economically and geographically unfeasible. Firms have sought to bring basic electric service to isolated and impoverished rural areas using off-grid solar lights and solar home systems, but often meet challenges common to base of the pyramid (BOP) markets. This article examines the intersection of theories related to successful business models for enterprises serving the base of the pyramid and studies of off-grid renewable energy enterprises. It identifies relevant and overlapping themes, and creates a framework for a successful business model that includes four primary components: community interaction; partnerships; local capacity building; and addressing barriers unique to the off-grid market, including financing, education, and development of distribution networks.

Keywords: Sustainable development; Solar; Renewable energy; Institutional void; Base of the pyramid; Energy access (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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