Schneider Electric, the global specialist in energy management, and Grameen Shakti, social business dedicated to the access to energy, announced the creation of Grameen Schneider Electric, a social business joint venture. Grameen Schneider Electric aims to provide access to electricity and develop associated services for disadvantaged people in Bangladesh. The official signature for the creation of the company took place June 19, 2012 in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), on the fringes of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development ("Rio +20").
As a social business, Grameen Schneider Electric meets the principles defined by Muhammad Yunus, not to generate losses or dividends to its shareholders in order to adapt the mechanisms of market economy to the poorest people and bring sustainable solutions to their situation. The profits made by selling access to energy solutions will be fully reused to develop and expand Grameen Schneider Electric offer throughout the country.
“Launching Grameen Schneider Electric on the fringes of Rio+20, Schneider Electric and Grameen Shakti combine their skills for access to energy, said Jean-Pascal Tricoire, President & CEO of Schneider Electric. This way, we develop sustainable solutions for the 1.3 billion people who are still lacking this right which is access to energy!”
Grameen Schneider Electric aims, by 2013, to equip nearly 200,000 households with home solar systems, based on the solutions already implemented by Schneider Electric in Senegal, Nigeria, India or Madagascar. Subsequently, the company will build on Schneider Electric and Grameen Shakti teams to conceive innovative and adapted solutions for water pumping or renewable off-grid power generation.
In this initiative, Schneider Electric and Grameen Shakti is supported by the Schneider Electric Energy Access (SEEA) Fund, which aims to support the development of entrepreneurial initiatives around access to energy and have an impact on people’s lives at the Base of the Pyramid (BoP). SEEA is funded by Schneider Electric and its employees, as well as institutional investors, including the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations (CDC) and PhiTrust Active Investors.