COMMUNIQUÉ: VELUX Natural Light solar lamps arrive in Africa


The jury of high-level experts dedicated to the fields of architecture, art and design subsequently selected the winning design, by Mariana Arando and Luca Fondello, from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Its solar lamp design was inspired by the way in which light can bring people together.

The VELUX Group has so far produced and donated 14,500 solar lamps, and 150 local sales agents are now being trained on how to sell lamps in off-grid communities in Senegal, Zimbabwe and Zambia. The training combines workshops, role play, demonstrations and group work.

“The first business training was very successful, it was very busy and the future sales agents had a great interest in the product, convinced that the lamps sell well.The agents could verify that the Natural Light lamp can save money to their customers After two months of use, customers already save money compared to what they spend on kerosene lamps, having solar lamps means being independent of the electricity grid, “said Edius N. Makono, Alight Zimbabwe Trust (Plan Zimbabwe Alumni).

Today, 1.2 billion people around the world do not have access to electricity, and reliable, sustainable light is often scarce after sunset. Therefore, the VELUX Group is collaborating with Little Sun and Plan International to bring sunlight to Africa. The project uses a business distribution model, with VELUX Group donating an initial batch of 14,500 solar lamps. The lamps will be sold at affordable local prices in communities without electricity in Senegal, Zimbabwe and Zambia. The lamps will be distributed from early 2016.

The solar lamps were designed by Mariana Arando and Luca Fondello, winners of the Natural Light – International Design contest. They were inspired by how natural light can unite people. The design concept of solar lamps makes it possible to connect several lamps, so that everyone can take their lamp to a social gathering and create light together.

The VELUX Group has always been strongly committed to providing the world with new opportunities for access to natural light and fresh air and giving back to society. The company is based on the knowledge of light, and they use their knowledge where they believe they will have the greatest impact. As part of its 75th anniversary, the Group intends to pay greater attention to bringing sustainable, reliable and affordable lighting to African regions outside the network.

About the distribution of Plan International of Natural Light lamps

About the distribution of Plan International of Natural Light lamps

The distribution model used is very similar in concept to micro-loans, in which a small local businessman who can not get loans under normal circumstances – due to the lack of maintained or collateral income – receives the offer of small loans that they help start the business. To get their sales started, these entrepreneurs will initially receive a stock of Natural Light lamps for free. When they have sold their stock, the resulting benefit will provide them with the capital to buy additional sales lamps, creating their own self-sustainable businesses.

Little Sun is a social business and global project founded by the world-renowned artist Olafur Eliasson and engineer Frederik Ottesen to provide clean, reliable and low-cost lighting to 1,100 million people around the world who live without electricity in areas that do not have electricity. The first product of the project, the Little Sun LED solar lamp, is sold worldwide. The purchase of Little Suns in areas of the world with electricity makes them available in areas with no connection to

About the donation of Natural Light

the network at a reduced price locally, providing a clean alternative to expensive and toxic lighting based on fuels, such as kerosene lanterns . Little Sun addresses the need for sustainable lighting that benefits communities outside the network by working with local entrepreneurs, creating local jobs and generating local benefits. The Little Sun project was officially launched in July 2012 at the Tate Modern in London. Since then, more than 300,000 Little Sun lamps have been distributed around the world, almost half of them in areas not connected to the network. In April 2014, Little Sun received a revolutionary $ 5 million impact investment from Bloomberg Philanthropies, making it possible to scale Little Sun’s operations on the continent of Africa.

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