ESAF Small Finance Bank: Pioneering a Retail Distribution Network Through Financing Clean Energy, Webinar, October 2017

In India, energy access is a huge challenge; 80 million households have little or no access to grid electricity due to the limits of grid penetration and the geographies in which they live. Providing quality, safe and reliable alternatives to kerosene and other traditional fuels means addressing two main challenges: distribution and affordability.

This webinar was based on the recently published case study on the energy lending program of ESAF Small Finance Bank, one of the seven MFI partners receiving TA from the PACE-D TA Program. The webinar will share the insights and knowledge gained under the Program for a broader audience in India and beyond including MFIs, renewable energy companies, donors and investors.

ESAF began as the Evangelical Social Action Forum, which expanded to include ESAF Microfinance and, in 2017, it became ESAF Small Finance Bank. Working in states where solar penetration across rural and peri-urban markets is growing due to the inconvenience of the inconsistent grid, ESAF is a genuine pioneer in the Indian clean energy finance sector. It has an extraordinarily broad retail offering that ranges from solar home systems and water purifiers to washing machines, offered with a loan model and cross-selling strategy that makes the company as much an asset financer as a microfinance institution.

In this way, ESAF is one of the most important players in the distributed renewable energy sector – an early mover, with its clean energy business operated through the broad ESAF retail distribution network, and now with a Small Finance Bank licence, which means reaching a wider network of new customers.

This webinar addressed ESAF’s energy finance program, how the PACE-D TA Program has worked to scale up ESAF’s energy finance program, the outcomes and lessons learned from this initiative, and ESAF’s future plans. View webinar here: http://bit.ly/ESAFwebinar.