Teaching students in Africa how to build and maintain renewable electricity supplies, Open Energy Labs is an EdTech company with a purpose. Backed by the UK and Zambian governments, the business is raising on Crowdcube with the objective to develop its technology to deliver its programme to 110,000 students in Zambia.
Recent research has shown that the electrification of Africa is being held back by a lack of local technical capacity to build and maintain renewable energy systems. But students can’t learn about electricity if they don’t have access to it. Therefore, educational institutions in Africa are forced to focus on theoretical learning, as they lack the resources to teach science effectively.
Open Energy Labs is developing an educational app and connected hardware kit which takes a “learn by making” approach to teaching students electronics, by building a renewable electricity supply, able to provide reliable power for lighting and mobile-phone charging. Our current technology is being used by Zambia’s two top technical colleges and we have MoUs under discussion with the Ministry of Higher Education and Ministry of Energy to roll out to a further 3,000 students.
With the e-learning market in Africa set to be worth £1.8b by 2024 we’re initially targeting universities, technical colleges and high schools in Zambia. We will then look to expand into other markets with initial contacts in Kenya, Tanzania and Angola.
We have received over £184,000 from Innovate UK through the Global Challenges Research Fund and have previously raised £67,000 from backers such as Bethnal Green Ventures and Energy4Impact.
To develop our technology and roll out our programme across Zambia, we need you!