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Senior Associates for Renewable Energy Strategy Firm / Mini Grid Tech

Job reference:
energy africa
Location:
UK
Salary:
$80k-$110k base plus bonus, benefits
Job type:
Perm - Consulting
Sector:
Strategy
Date posted:
13/07/2018
This vacancy has now expired.
Our client's mission is to unlock the power of capital to make a strong return and a lasting difference in frontier markets. They provide investment advisory services in frontier markets.Their clients have included governments, development finance institutions, private equity firms, Fortune 100 companies, and research institutions. Their direct investment arm, finances solar projects in East Africa.

Description
They recently launched the first Mini-Grid Innovation Lab for Africa, a dedicated research and development fund for testing business model prototypes on mini-grids. Over 600 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa still lack access to electricity. The Innovation Lab conservatively estimates that at least 100 million of these people are most cost effectively served by mini-grids today. The Innovation Lab is supporting the sector to become more commercially viable by trialling new business ideas with developers in the field. The Lab has two objectives:
1) Improve the unit economics of mini-grids so that they are able to provide more power to more people at less cost
2) Build the case for mini-grids so that government, investors and donors can make decisions about how to best integrate mini-grids into the overall electrification mix in Africa.

The client is recruiting a full time Senior Associate to lead the Mini-Grid Innovation Lab initiative. They are seeking a highly motivated individual with previous exposure to, or interest in, renewable energy, retail energy markets, or off-grid energy and who has notable private sector or investment experience with strong analytical skills. Individuals with experience in designing and implementing pilots and/or managing business insight initiatives for rural consumers in Africa are also encouraged to apply. Experience in developing countries is preferred, as is an engineering degree or technical background.

You will lead the Mini-Grid Innovation Lab for Africa work, which has two main groups of activities. The first is working with mini-grid developers to identify and test innovative solutions to the mini-grid business model, through managing an iterative process of piloting and refining ideas. Based on the results of these experiments and the data collected, your second set of activities will focus on data analysis and promoting the results to the sector. With support from academic institutions, you will analyse the results of pilots and their impact on mini-grid business models, and support the dissemination of these results to the rest of the sector.

About the Team
They operate in frontier markets that also hold immense investment opportunities. The team is a unique group made up of people who are genuinely excited by the opportunity to make a difference in some of the most challenging yet exciting markets in the world. Team members come from diverse backgrounds but share a number of qualities: curiosity, humility, integrity, a drive for excellence, and a bias for action.


Skills and Characteristics required
• Ability to think creatively to find innovative solutions to business model gaps
• Excellent analytical ability and discipline; ability to think clearly, structure problems logically, and then design and implement solutions that focus on the core issues
• Strong quantitative skills. Ability or willingness to learn how to deploy analytical tools beyond Excel on large data sets to drive insight is essential.
• Project management; planning and executing programs in remote locations to time and budget. Coordinating diverse range of stakeholders in challenging environments
• Self-starter who is passionate about creating lasting change in frontier markets
• Willingness to work and live in a sometimes challenging environment
• Sensitivity to diverse stakeholder interests (donors, private sector, governments)
Primary responsibilities
• Oversee and implement innovative business model improvements across Tanzania, Kenya, Nigeria and Zambia
o Support mini-grid companies to design prototype innovations through ideation workshops and ongoing consultation
o Project manage implementation of prototypes
o Support data collection on impact and undertake quantitative analysis to evaluate success
o Work with key stakeholders to refine and improve the next iteration
o Support external experimentation initiatives through the Lab’s network when requested and appropriate
• Analyse results of Lab’s work and support advocacy efforts for the sector
o Develop published results with academic institutions and advocacy organisations to promote results of Lab’s work (successes and failures in experimentation)
o Maintain and update dashboards for reporting to the sector and to donors on impact
• Identify and engage partners
o Identify new partners that could engage in the Lab’s work, e.g. academic institutions, NGOs, donors and funders, mini-grid developers, technology companies
o Manage diverse network of partners in the Lab (over 25 organisations already involved)
o Mobilise scale-up funding for the Lab’s efforts over the next 2.5 years
• Support market and policy assessments and ongoing market analysis
o Conduct macroeconomic, regulatory, and operational assessments
o Provide sector analysis of priority areas for business model improvement
o Identify potential new markets and priorities for experimentation in the mini-grid sector

Location
Nairobi, Kenya or Lagos Nigeria. There will be substantial opportunities for international travel.

To apply by email to this position, please send your CV and covering letter to the following link: richard@mindbench.co.uk

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