The collaboration will see the two companies working together to bring reliable and eco-friendly electricity solutions to households and businesses across the nation.
Load shedding, also known as rolling blackouts, where citizens are left without power between six to twelve hours a day, has long been a significant challenge for South Africa. It dramatically impacts the nation's daily life, including access to essential services such as healthcare and education, and economy. According to the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), blackouts may cost South Africa as much as $51 million a day. It disproportionately affects lower-income communities, where access to backup power sources is limited. This exacerbates inequalities in access to essential services.
Load shedding has also raised concerns among potential investors, both domestic and foreign, about the reliability of South Africa's energy supply. This hinders economic growth and job creation. According to the SARB, load shedding is expected to reduce the country’s GDP by 2 percent this year.
Wetility and Zola Electric are committed to tackling this issue head-on by providing accessible and sustainable power solutions that will enhance the quality of life for South Africans.
“Load shedding in South Africa is a major issue affecting the daily lives of millions of people, particularly lower-income communities” said Bill Lenihan, Chief Executive Officer of Zola Electric. “This exacerbates inequalities in access to essential services. Load shedding has also raised concerns among potential investors, hindering the country’s economic growth. At Zola Electric, we are driven by the mission to provide clean, reliable, and affordable electricity to all. Zola’s solutions are currently installed in homes, businesses, schools, and hospitals across four continents, serving almost 3 million customers. Partnering with Wetility and having Tendai Mtawarira on board amplifies our commitment to addressing the energy challenges faced by South Africans. Together, we will illuminate the path to a brighter, more sustainable future for all.”
Zola’s Flex Max product serves homeowners looking to power AC appliances such as refrigeration alongside lights, connectivity, TV, and businesses looking to power productive use products. It fits seamlessly in Zola’s network of hardware solutions and, like all Zola’s products, is installed, commissioned, optimized and managed through Vision, Zola’s network management software platform.
Flex Max builds upon Zola’s leading distributed energy enterprise platform, the world’s only technology aiming to deliver community-level electrification to the 8 billion people living without affordable, reliable energy. Flex Max provides ‘electrical infrastructure in a box’ for customers with no existing connection or those with a weak / unreliable grid connection and not much roof space. Able to charge from both solar and the grid, Flex Max serves both rural communities and the ‘peri-urban’ market. The core value of Flex Max is its larger, modular battery and flexibility to leverage both high-efficiency appliances that come with AC as well as infrastructure’s DC systems, so more customers can use existing appliances while benefiting from the versatility of Zola’s DC ecosystem.
Wetility and Zola Electric are set to leverage their expertise in renewable energy solutions, advanced technology, and local knowledge to develop and deliver innovative power solutions tailored to the unique needs of South Africa. Through this partnership, they aim to reduce the impact of load shedding and empower individuals and businesses with reliable access to electricity.
“We're thrilled about our collaboration with Zola, aiming to allow greater access to alternative energy for everyday South Africans” added Vincent Maposa, CEO and co-founder of Wetility. “Energy independence should be a universal right, not a luxury. With the Zola Flex Max, regular consumers can relish uninterrupted power and savings on their monthly bills. It brings us immense satisfaction to empower South Africans from all walks of life, granting them control over their daily lives and the assurance of a more stable future.”
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