Abdishakur Ahmed

Country representing

Somalia

Languages

Somali
English

Education

  • Abaarso Tech University
  • B.A in Financial Management & M.S in Engineering Management

Current organisation

SomLite

Current role

Co-Founder & CEO

Skills and Expertise

Finance
Logistics and distribution
Project management
Research
Social entrepreneurship

Areas of interest

Business
Environment
Leadership
Peace and Conflict
Sustainable Development

Website & Social Links

I am passionate about

Actions

SomLite sells quality, warrantied solar lanterns sourced from proven manufacturers, such as GreenLight Planet, and make these solar units affordable to rural customers via a daily payment installment plan. Rural Somalis are cash-constrained and typically don’t have enough cash to buy solar products outright, yet they spend far more on a year’s worth of kerosene than on the total cost of a solar light. SomLite has introduced a financing model that utilizes mobile money technology to allow for incremental payments. This system is connected to Angaza designs’ Pay-As-You-Go platform. Angaza is a San Francisco based company that provides a software platform that allows us to track payments and activate solar units when payments are made. This innovation has unleashed the purchasing power of many villagers who would have been deterred by the upfront cost of a solar unit. Our annual social impact assessments show that access to solar lighting significantly improves quality of life in rural villages. Last year, Abaarso Tech University (a local university) and students from HEC Paris (the prestigious French business school) evaluated the social impact of our program and found it had measurable and positive impact on the communities served. Our 4,200 distributed solar lamps allow small businesses to open two extra hours after sundown, young pupils to study an extra two and half hours during the night time, and household income has increased by an average of $12.50 per month. In addition to enhancing our customer’s well-being, SomLite’s work is also creating jobs. SomLite has directly created 31 jobs (26 sales agents and 5 managers) and 17 of these are for women.