New light in Mali
With Yeelen Kura, FRES has been active in the southern provinces Sikasso and Ségou since 2001. The head office is located in Koutiala.
Yeelen Kura, which means “New Light” in the local language Bambara, supplies light and electricity to households and small companies via Solar Home Systems (SHS). Furthermore, the company builds mini-grids powered by solar energy and/or diesel.
Toneque Traoré has been a customer of Yeelen Kura for more than 10 years. He runs a school in Koutiala, where children from miles around take lessons in French and mathematics. “At the time, I was immediately convinced of the advantages of solar energy. Previously, we only had a few oil lamps. These were expensive and produced relatively little light. Now that we have electric lamps, it is also possible to teach in the evenings. The heat is more bearable in the evening. And we can now offer the children more hours in education and create separate classes per age category.”
Power provides economic activity. For instance, Sheikh MIIe from Mpessoba started a business where people can charge their mobile phones. He has chargers in all shapes and sizes. Even when Sheikh only has three customers a day, he has sufficient turnover to pay the monthly contribution for the energy services that Yeelen Kura provides. On good days, twenty to thirty customers come by to charge their mobile phone, so he makes a good living with his retail trade in energy.
Situation in Mali
When looking at its surface, Mali is one of the biggest countries in West Africa. The country has over 15 million inhabitants and holds the 176th position on the most recent Human Development Index of the UNDP. Approximately 85% of the inhabitants have no access to electricity.
In 2012 the political situation was instable; the army staged a coup in the capital in March, and rebels were active in the north of the country. The intervention of the French Government in Mali in 2013 meant the end of the political crisis. Democratic elections were held and a new president was elected.
Facts & figures
|Products and services||SHS and solar mini-grids|
|Number of customers||7,480|
|Number of energy stores||15|
|Number of employees||56|
Management Yeelen Kura
|Djibril Séméga||General Manager|
|Coen de Ronde||Chairman|
|Jolan Dalati||Board member|
|Emily Umpleby||Board member|