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Jersey firms advise on Kenya solar home systems project

Jersey firms advise on Kenya solar home systems project

Tuesday 30 June 2020

Jersey firms advise on Kenya solar home systems project


Two Jersey law firms have advised companies working on a project to use solar power to provide energy access to 1.2m people in rural Kenya.

Bedell Cristin advised worked with the New York and London offices of international law firm Hogan Lovells to advise US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC).

The 'off-balance-sheet' financing vehicle, Brighter Life Kenya 1 Limited (BLK1), is the result of a joint effort between Solar Frontier Capital Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of African Frontier Capital, and d.Light Design Inc, a provider of solar energy products.

BLK1 will provide funding to purchase accounts receivables of Pay-As-You-Go solar home systems from d.Light’s Kenyan subsidiary, providing the company with working capital to finance its continued growth.

The Bedell Cristin team was led by partner Alasdair Hunter and included Senior Associate Malcolm Ellis and Associate Louise Ridgway. 

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Pictured: Alasdair Hunter, who led the Bedell Cristin team.

“This was a fantastic project to be a part of which will make a significant difference to communities in Kenya," Mr Hunter said.

“We’re dedicated to working with our clients to achieve the best outcomes possible and we look forward to seeing the tangible results this deal will bring.”

Walkers, which says it delivered a “significant proportion” of its work on a pro bono basis due to the positive impact of the project, advised AFC.

It worked alongside Allen and Overy LLP, who advised on English Law and New York law, and Kaplan and Stratton, which advised on matters of Kenyan law.

Tristan Maultby, Senior Counsel at Walkers commented: “We are delighted to have assisted AFC and lead counsel Allen & Overy LLP on this receivables financing transaction. The transaction is expected to facilitate the provision of solar home systems and related solar products to d.light’s customers in Kenya, bringing electricity to well over a million people currently living off-grid in Kenya, and helping to sustain the local off-grid energy industry.”  

Walkers Partner Nigel Weston added: “The fact that this transaction will directly improve the quality of life of so many people was a great motivating factor for the Walkers team."

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Pictured: Walkers Partner Nigel Weston.

He continued: "This transaction also demonstrates the very positive impact that offshore structures can have on facilitating the international flow of capital to really benefit the day to day lives of huge numbers of people.”

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