UOMA, founded in 2017, is a dedicated and neutral intermediary, focused on accelerating the growth of off-grid energy access in Uganda to enable universal energy access. It was borne out of a partnership between the Shell Foundation, DFID and USAID / Power Africa under their Scaling Off-Grid Energy: Grand Challenge for Development (SOGE) partnership. UOMA is managed by a team of technical experts with experience across many areas of off-grid energy, finance, business, policy & regulation, and development economics.

Along with our many successes in our 2017 pilot year, we acknowledge that more is still needed to address market gaps in scaling off-grid energy in Uganda. For this reason, we have planned for a three-year extension of the Market Accelerator (2018 through 2020).

The Market Accelerator must be adaptive to the changing needs of the market – focusing to overcome new barriers as they arise and coordinating with new stakeholders as they emerge. The goal is for the Market Accelerator to maintain a relatively consistent level of capacity over the next three years, but to focus resources on areas of greatest need and where the accelerator can be most impactful. The goal is that as the Market Accelerator empowers other organizations on certain workstreams, capacity shifts to new areas.

Our work is focused on the following initiatives:

  • Access to finance: Increase access to local currency debt finance for private sector actors in off-grid energy, bridging a critical working capital shortfall and currency mismatch and enabling operators to increase affordability of units.
  • Unserved populations: Reduce barriers to better target unserved populations in Uganda, improving access for some of the hardest-to-reach and most in need communities.
  • Productive use technology: Support industry to test & validate productive-use technologies that can achieve economic benefits for off-grid Ugandans while growing energy demand.
  • Government policy and targets (new initiative in 2018): Support the public sector to create effective policies and an effective enabling environment to increase off-grid energy uptake in Uganda.
    Communication and coordination: Enable more effective communication and coordination in the off-grid energy sector in Uganda, resulting in better resource allocation and accelerated progress in achieving universal access.