ACUMEN ENTREPRENEURS BUILD SOLUTIONS TO THE TOUGHEST CHALLENGES FACING THE POOR
A distribution company that ensures affordable, renewable energy products reach India’s most remote communities
In India, more than 73 million households, half of which are in Rajasthan, lack access to energy and are left to rely on kerosene to light their homes. While several companies have created innovative products to provide clean, reliable energy, the challenge lies in getting those products into the hands of the customers.
India’s poor infrastructure and connectivity makes last-mile distribution particularly costly and challenging for energy enterprises serving low-income customers. What’s more, despite a clear need, consumers are reluctant to invest in clean energy solutions because they are unaware of the advantages or need assistance deciphering the good from the bad because cheap yet inefficient options have flooded the market.
Frontier Markets is tackling the problem of distribution to bring access to affordable, renewable energy to India’s poor. The company is resolving supply chain challenges as well as keeping customers informed and assured of the value of new high-quality solutions and providing after-sales service to ensure customer satisfaction and retention.
The company partners with several trusted retailers that sell energy products such as solar lanterns and home systems. By leveraging a growing network of 185 existing brick-and-mortar stores, Frontier Markets can improve access and achieve rural penetration.
Roughly 88 percent of Frontier Markets’ customers live under $2.50 a day. The company meets with local women’s groups, farmers’ associations and village leaders to continue to learn and address the needs of the most remote customers. By building trust with the community, the company can ensure a sustained usage of lifesaving efficient and safe energy products.
To date, the company has sold more than 20,000 products across the state of Rajasthan and is projected to impact nearly 3 million lives by the end of 2019.