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Nigeria: MTN to provide alternative electricity to customers

April 8, 2014 • Mobile and Telecoms, Top Stories

Pan-African mobile operator MTN and Nova-Lumos, a distributed utility provider, are collaborating on a next-generation alternative “mobile electricity” service. The Nova-Lumos service will provide alternative electricity to MTN customers who are living in rural areas across Nigeria and are not connected to the national electricity grid.

Michael Ikpoki, CEO of MTN Nigeria (Image source: MTN)

Michael Ikpoki, CEO of MTN Nigeria (Image source: MTN)

The Nova-Lumos service is provided using a solar panel and an indoor unit that allows MTN customers to subscribe to alternative electricity on demand using their mobile phone.

With Nova-Lumos, MTN customers can replace kerosene, candles and flashlights with modern electricity that can power significant lights, cellphones, fans, PCs or laptops, radios, TVs and other small electronic devices, all at once, every day.

“By paying for usage only in small payments, the same way our customers purchase airtime and other mobile services, MTN and Nova-Lumos will offer an innovative and widely-accessible service for all MTN customers,” said Michael Ikpoki, MTN Nigeria CEO.

“MTN is committed to investing in the future of mobile electricity to our customers across Nigeria,” he added.

The first Nova-Lumos systems will be publicly available on the MTN service points for the general public soon. A future announcement about the systems’ availability will be made by MTN.

“We are very excited about our partnership with MTN which will enable us to distribute the Nova-Lumos power systems across Nigeria and touch millions of lives,” said David Vortman, CEO and Co-Founder at Nova-Lumos.

“One of our guiding principles is that the Nova-Lumos service must be affordable and accessible to anyone in Nigeria in order to have a meaningful impact on the Nigerian electricity market,” he emphasized.

Nova Lumos in partnership with MTN Nigeria received funding from the GSMA’s Mobile Enabled Community Services (MECS) Innovation Grant Fund with the support of the UK Government. This grant is awarded to organizations developing innovations that improve access to energy and water among undeserved communities by leveraging mobile technology and infrastructure. The MECS Innovation Fund has helped to highlight the demand for mobile-enabled services and the role that mobile can play in supporting access to basic utility services across rural and urban markets.

Staff writer

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