upOwa - let's power people now
Solar power for everyone: a dream that turns into reality for millions of people in Africa!
Because today the technology is available and doesn't reach the people in need.
upOwa empowers local off-the-grid West and Central African communities through access to electricity. Thanks to technology improvements, innovative distribution channels and tailored financing options, we can reach the most remote communities.
"A winner is a dreamer who never gives up" Nelson Mandela
What we do?
We have developed our own solution to remotely produce clean energy, such as electricity with solar kits. upOwa offers high-quality solar systems built by Africans for Africa, along with associated training and lifetime maintenance.
Our products are developed in a close relationship with our world-class partners.
Our impact is made possible and magnified by local and regional partners such as NGOs, authorities, governments and industrial companies. Our innovative distribution relies on local networks and mobile sales teams on the ground.
From our advisers to our fellOws in the communities, we are all just one team.
upOwa's innovative pay-as-you-go schemes allow isolated communities to escape from the vicious circle of energy poverty. Training programs and local hires help make the most of this renewable human resource on the long run.
May it be on your own or with your organization, you can help us power this people now.
"If there are dreams about a beautiful South Africa, there are also roads that lead to their goal" Nelson Mandela
Kilien de RENTY
CEO & co-Founder
Software Engineering Manager
Quality Engineer & Intervention
Intern in Marketing
Intern in Call center
CMO & co-Founder
Customer & Commercial Manager
Intern in Market studies and impact evaluation
Intern in Quality
Electronic Engineer & Energy System Designer
Intern in Software Development
Marcel MELLE BALEBATA
Call center Manager
Administration and Finance Manager
Eunika Mercier-Laurent is an associate researcher at the IEA Lyon and Professor of Knowledge Innovation at EPITA and INSA Bourges. Her research include knowledge management and innovation, techniques and methods of innovation, knowledge discovery techniques and solving complex problems. She has a good expertise in setting up multidisciplinary projects and has an excellent experience of implementation of European projects. She is an expert with the national and European institutions and author of over one hundred publications findable all over the world.
Marc is a Professor at the University of Perpignan in PROMES laboratory that operates the 10,000-sun solar furnace in Odeillo and rekindles Themis solar power plant in Targassonne. His first achievements were in Mathematics and in Computer Science but he is now mostly involved in broad nationwide initiatives. He was for example detailed for two years to the French Ministry of Higher Education and Research in Paris to work on the Crédit d'impact Recherche (CIR), a $ 6 billion fiscal incentive to support research and development in the French industry.
Frederik THIERY obtained his Scientific Doctorate in Automatic Engineering in 2006 at the University of Perpignan. Lecturer since 2007 at the Laboratory PROMES in research activities concerning the field of control , diagnosis and su-pervision for systems management in renewable energy (RE) .Frederik works in measurement methods to renewables energy, from modeling to ordering systems. He is currently responsible of the teaching license for Engineering Sciences (EEA field, and domain of Energies and Materials) UPVD and also responsible of inter-national relations in the Department "Energy - Renewable Energy " of the engi-neering school Polytech'Montpellier in Perpignan.
Yves is Professor at Grenoble Institute of Technology. Being trained as an electrical engineer, he was awarded a PhD on the numerical simulation, models and methods for electromagnetic field computation in 1991. He was formerly at the heading the "modeling and CAD in electromagnetism" team. In 2007 he became deputy director of the Grenoble electrical engineering research laboratory. He had headed the Carnot Institute "Energies of the future" which gathers all research activities on the Grenoble region in the field of new technologies of energy for 7 years since 2007. He is currently heading the Grenoble INP Ense3 engineering school, which trains high-level engineers able to take up the challenges associated with energy, water, and sustainable development. He has published more than 60 papers in scientific journals and 110 communications in conferences
Pierre de la Salle
Founder and PresidentLocal Energy Network
Computer scientist, developer of new products at Bull Sems then at Hewlett Pacard in Grenoble ; founder of two startups in Silicon Valley, the first financed and ac-companied by Kleiner Perkins and the second by Compuware. Creation of Blue Eye Video in Grenoble from an invention of INRIA Montbonnot. Retired, Grenoble Angels member, advisor for various startups with a preference for innovative, use-ful projects, which enrich society. Involved in an association for the care of the mentally handicapped.
An enthusiatic electrical engineer with 10 years experience in project management, Clara has led more than 15 projects throughout Europe, Asia and Africa. Before founding Local Energy Network in 2012, she worked as Project Director in technical assistance for developing countries. Her experience of hydropower includes supervision of EPC contracts, analysis and improvement of the institutional framework, project development and project finance.
Roland has over 25 years of experience in the field of Technology of Information and Communication. His professional experience is centered on Innovation Man-agement, enriched by various additional responsibilities: profit center manager, de-velopment manager, director of strategic partnerships, and is a strategy consultant along with co- founder of start-ups. His expertise and his ability to combine strate-gic approaches and operational implementation were acquired and demonstrated in multicultural environments.
Pierrick is a technology enthusiast who worked and lived his passion for energy challenges in six different countries. After studying the potential of biomass for energy generation in West-Africa while graduating in Europe, he learnt the challenges of on-grid versus off-grid generation in South-East Asia, conducted research back in Germany on the future of urban energy systems, worked on the first smart solar district in France while graduating in economics, and now he looks at the public policy aspects of the energy sector in the USA. Also a part-time researcher at UC Berkeley and a true supporter of upOwa, Pierrick holds a Master's Degree in Energy and Resources from Ecole Centrale Nantes and a Master's Degree in Economics from Mines ParisTech.
Rick Beacham started his studies in 2005 at The University of Southern Mississippi in Computer Science and completed his degree in 2011. Along the way through college he found a great life partner and made new friends from all over the world. Since then he completed an internship at NOAA at Northern Gulf Institute helping scientists get big data to the masses. Launch a new social network platform called impersona.com and work for the largest e-commerce site for non profits, called Good360.org. His interests include green IT, cloud computing, grid networking, and . He hopes to help build innovative technology that does not over consume energy.
Engineer in Rural Enginieering, professor of Thechnical Education Hight Schools in Civil Engineering, graduated of the ENSTP in Yaoude, Lionel has three years of experience as hydraulic Engineer in the compagny EGCS. He got his Master Degree in water systems and sanitation in rural areas and possess a very good knowledge in the field of Civil Engineering. He is currently preparing a Master II in Environmental Science Engineering. The subject of his Memory is 'Integrated Management of Water Ressources and Sanitation of African Cities'.
Student in his third year at the University of Yaoundé I in physical Degree, Boris has move out many times qnd these experiences allow him today to have a great capacity of adaptation and a good knowledge of different cultures. Fascinated by electricity and computers, Boris has the ambition to become an electrical engineer and do not hesitate to give his free time to causes close to his heart.
Marguerite Grandjean has applied internationally her expertise in development, demography, and business. As a futurist for the Institute for Alternative Futures, a renowned futures consultancy based in Washington, D.C., she has won applause for developing eye-opening scenarios and forecasts about alternative futures in a range of countries and sectors. Most recently, she worked with Oxfam and multiple stakeholders to develop scenarios on agriculture and food justice in Peru in the year 2030. She then assisted the Oxfam Peru team in deriving policy implications from the scenarios. Her other recent work includes applying a futures perspective to sustainability for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Marguerite holds a BSc and MSc in Strategy and Management from ESSEC Business School (Paris, France) and an MSc in Population and Development from the London School of Economics (London, UK). She speaks native French and fluent Spanish. She feels alive when sharing soul-shaking conversations, transformative readings, and fulfilling friendships with people from around the world.
Mahaut is an optimistic international development practitioner. After graduating in Psychology from l'Ecole des Psychologues Praticiens, she oriented herself towards international development in post-conflict area in Africa by pursuing a master in Communication, Culture and Technology at Georgetown University. Currently based in DR Congo and dealing with conflict-based issues, she daily experiences the energy gaps of the region, and the potential lying under mainly structural obstacles. Raised in a family of entrepreneurs, she also has knowledge of business development challenges and capabilities; and is a strong advocate and believer that the private sector has a key role to play in rural development.
Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For indeed, that's all who ever have. Margaret Mead
Seasoned advisor & consultant with experience in providing solutions, identifying strengths, weakness and opportunities that may not be obvious to a business, Les has a successful record in sales and business management as well as a 10+ year track record in capitalizing and structuring start-up and expansion stage companies. Les has a vast experience as an entrepreneurial professional with vision in sales, marketing, business development and leadership in both start-up and turn around settings.
Nicolas Diouf currently runs a consulting firm in Accounting, Finances and taxation in Yaoundé, Cameroon. He holds a Master's in Business Administration, an Accounting Senegalese Diploma and a postgraduate degree in corporate Finance. During the past ten years, Nicolas has lived and worked in Ivory Coast, in Cameroon and recently in Tunisia for 3 years in the asset management sector as a financial analyst for a software company. Development issues are particularly close to his heart and he wants to make its contributions to poverty reduction efforts and improving the living conditions of the poor in Africa.
Colin Geraghty is an adjunct junior fellow with the American Security Project, and co-founder and executive vice president of the Next Generation Foreign Policy Network, a nonprofit dedicated to helping young professionals explore new challenges, foster meaningful relationships, and develop critical skills for national security in the 21st century. A French-American dual citizen, he spent 16 years in France. Since moving back to the U.S., he has worked on Capitol Hill, for a think tank, and in the private sector.
VP and Senior Futurist at the Institute for Alternative Futures, Eric developed scenarios for Oxfam, Rockefeller Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. He has published on the topic of global development in World Future Review (Spring 2011) and Monthly Developments (April 2013). Previously he started and ran a company in China and served as a submarine office in the US Navy.
Passionate about software development and computer graphics, Rodrigue studied electrical engineering before developing his passion for software engineering at the African Institute of Computer in Cameroon. In order to automate the mange-ment, this engineer of computer work has developed applications on many plat-forms before specializing in webapps. His expertise of graphics computer gives to his applications a good ergonomic and an unrivaled usability. Rodrigue thinks eve-ryone should have access to energy. This is why he decided to develop applica-tions that will affect the field of renewable energy.
Pierre-Louis Pernet is currently an electricity market analyst at the French energy regulator in Paris. Prior to this position, he was with the French Embassy in DC dealing with nuclear energy issues. He holds a MSc from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology where he had the opportunity to deep dive into fundamental physics topics in different laboratories at CERN, Imperial College and Stanford University. Pierre-Louis Pernet is passionate about energy, especially challenges related to grid access for people.
Damien developed a passion for cartography at the Institute of Latin America Stud-ies, to reveal modern environmental issues. He focused his Masters degree on Latin America urban areas context, and made his Masters thesis part of the re-search program on Energy Transition in Latin America. In the framework of this program, he intensively studied the city of Manaus in Brazil, developing urban analysis skills through GIS use as well as his knowledge on energetic issues in developing countries such as Brazil. An enthusiastic "Map Builder", Damien is a very active supporter of upOwa.
Brice holds a Msc in electrical and computer engineering at Polytech Lille, France and a Bsc in electrical engineering from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure Polytech-nique of Yaoundé where he was vice president of the Electrical and Telecommuni-cation Club. Couple professional experiences notably with Air Liquide and Decath-lon (Oxylane). Holds Certified Associate Project Management Certificate from the PMI and member of PMI France Chapter.
Passionate about energy and development issues,Gaëlle works as an energy pol-icy analyst in the French Prime Minister's office. Originally from Cameroon, she could witness first-hand how and why access to modern energy is critical for edu-cation and business. She holds an Engineer's degree from Supelec, a Master in Technology Policy from the University of Cambridge and a Master in International Affairs from Sciences Po Paris.
"A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination" Nelson Mandela
Where to find us
We are currently located on the sunny side of West Cameroon.
+33 6 76 34 90 81
+237 666 166 112
KIT MEDIA upOwa