AFSIA Solar Awards 2020 winners announced

The AFSIA Solar Awards is the industry’s premier awards ceremony organized in collaboration with the Africa Energy Forum.

AFSIA Solar Awards 2020
Solar Picture of the Year – by Alexandre Skander Allegue of Pawame.

The Africa Solar Industry Association (AFSIA), in partnership with the Africa Energy Forum (AEF), has unveiled the winners of the inaugural Solar Awards 2020.

The virtual award ceremony was part of the Digital Africa Energy Festival, and is the industry’s premier awards ceremony seeking to recognize and celebrate exceptional talent and achievements in the African solar market.

Hosted by AEF, the Oil & Gas Council, African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa, the annual event, attracted over 130 entries from all over Africa, seeking to be recognized for the 15 award categories.

According to AFSIA, Africa is characterized by the wide and rich diversity of solar projects and applications ranging from large-scale solar parks to solar home systems, grid-connected residential systems to off-grid hospitals and schools, basic PV systems to solar-powered applications such as street lighting, solar irrigation, refrigeration and many more.

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The Awarding board, composed of industry leaders in the solar energy sector in Africa, were mandated with the task of evaluating each entry to identify the most deserving companies and individuals for the awards which were handed out at the virtual ceremony on the 29 October.

Of the 15 categories in competition this year, ‘Commercial & Industrial Solar Project of the Year’ and ‘Mini-Grid Project of the Year’ were the most contested titles, reflective of the increased activity of both segments within the African solar industry.

Also popular among participants was ‘Woman in Solar of the Year’ category which was awarded to Olaedo Osoka, the CEO of Daystar Power Ghana, for leading the expansion of the company from Nigeria to Ghana, Togo and Senegal and, realising Commercial & Industrial projects of 8MW in two-year period.

This category highlighted the very positive trend of the growing involvement of women in the solar industry across the continent.

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AFSIA founder, John van Zuylen, said the event was organised as a great show celebrating exceptional achievement in the solar industry.

It hosted several global industry leaders such as Huawei, Trina Solar and Jinko Solar.

The AFSIA Solar Awards 2020 were issued as follows:

  • Utility Scale Project of the YearWinner: Sterling & Wilson Solar, For the multi-projects 322 MW contribution to Egypt’s 1.6 GW Benban Solar Complex
  • Commercial & Industrial Solar Project of the YearWinner: CrossBoundary Energy, for the Jabi Lake Mall project in Abuja, Nigeria
  • Mini-Grid Project of the YearWinner: Africa GreenTec, for their productive-use based mini-grid projects in Mali, Niger and Senegal which are often subject to high security risks
  • Solar Home System Company of the YearWinner: d.light, for achieving the target of reaching 100 million people with solar energy
  • Residential Project of the YearWinner: Munyax Eco, for exceptional achievement in the field of Solar Water heaters having installed more than 1,000 units across Rwanda saving 8,000 tons of CO2 per year
  • African Solar Company of the Year – Winner: ANKA Madagascar, for securing 5 MW worth of mini-grids across Madagascar and for the company’s innovative AgriGrid model
  • African Solar SME of the Year – Winner: Pawame and Solar Box Gabon, for reaching 80,000 Kenyans with Solar Home System solutions while achieving cash-flow break-even and profitability, and for developing the “Solar Cube” which doubles the production of traditional solar panels
  • Financial Advisor of the Year – Winner: Synergy Consulting Infrastructure and Financial Advisory Services, for their advisory services to cutting-edge large-scale projects across the continent such as the 2×50 MW tender in Botswana, the 32MW Djermaya project in Chad and the world’s first PV-CSP hybrid 200MW project in Egypt
  • Legal Advisor of the Year – Winner: Eversheds Sutherland, for their contribution to the Open Solar Contracts with IRENA, the International Renewable Energy Agency, and the Terrawatt Initiative, providing open source standardised contracts to governments across the globe
  • Technical Advisor of the Year – Winner: Suntrace, for technical advisory to the Fekola Gold mine hybrid project in Mali, a first of its kind off-grid hybrid project composed of 36 MW of solar, 15.4 MWh of storage, saving 13 million litres of heavy fuel oil annually
  • DFI of the Year – Winner: African Development Bank (AfDB), for establishing SEFA, the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa which has contributed among others the first of its kind inventory finance facility for solar irrigation products in East Africa
  • Solar Innovation for the Year – Winner: Phaesun, for their work on the RevivED Water Innovation project, a solar-powered desalination and purification systems for brackish water based on electrodialysis technology, providing up to 2000l of clean drinking per day
  • Solar Picture of the Year – Winner: Alexandre Skander Allegue – Pawame, for a beautiful picture highlighting the impact of lighting in the most remote areas
  • Solar Video of the Year – Winner: Joanna Gentili – African mini-grids, for a super inspiring and motivating video about electrifying a village in Malawi