The First Initiative of Energy4All Foundation (Nl) is getting wings!

NICE is a semi commercial franchising concept of small scale renewable energy and internet centers for local communities in developing countries driven by local entrepreneurs. NICE is the first initiative of Energy4All, a non-profit foundation based in The Netherlands. Energy4All promotes off-grid energy, water and communication-related projects and services, e.g. stand-alone “micro-utilities”, for the benefit of sustainable development of small and perhaps isolated communities in developing countries. NICE International has built up and will further expand a franchise-network of solar-powered IT-centers with emphasis on Africa. The activities of NICE International include the development, financing and operation of NICE centers. It aims at providing local consumers and small companies with access to energy, information, knowledge, educational services, social networking and other products and services that support them in their personal and economic development. NICE started in 2006 with 2 pilot centers in The Gambia. Today, NICE successfully operates 7 NICE-centers in The Gambia of which 6 are managed by local entrepreneurs on a franchise-basis. In summer of 2011 the EU DG DEVCO Energy Facility has provided a 2 mln€ grant on the basis of industrial co-financing for the further expansion of NICE International. Co-financing will be provided by a number of large financial institutions and technology firms. NICE will, thus, extend its services in the next 4 years to Tanzania and Zambia, setting up a total of 50 new NICE-centers. This will make NICE one of the biggest retail networks in Africa, serving over 200,000 Base of the Pyramid customers. The long term strategy of NICE International is to run 250 NICE-centers in 2020 serving 1 million customers in Africa.

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