Husk Power Systems, a rural energy company operating renewable minigrids in Asia and Africa, announced that it registered 90% growth in revenue in 2020 compared to the previous year.
The company also announced that its commercial business customers more than quadrupled.
Manoj Sinha, CEO of Husk Power, commented: “In the face of a pandemic and a global economic downturn, Husk Power and its customers not only weathered these challenging times but saw record growth that positions the company for an even stronger year ahead.”
According to Sinha, in 2021 the company forecasts 125% revenue growth and with an expectation of becoming the first minigrid company to become operationally profitable on an annual basis. “To continue growth at a CAGR of 100% in 2022 and beyond, Husk will raise $50 million in equity and $60 million in debt this year,” he said.
In 2019, well before COVID-19 hit, Husk Power had put in place a comprehensive resilience plan to deal with unexpected externalities such as flooding, supply chain disruptions and adverse government actions.
The plan involved identifying secondary sources of revenue, hiring additional staff to cover unexpected events, acquiring distressed projects during the pandemic, and diversifying its supply chain for a variety of components.
Financial results for Husk Power held strong
The planning paid off. While average revenue per user (ARPU) of the minigrid industry remains low in Africa, at under $5.00 average across all customer categories, including households and small businesses, according to the Africa Minigrid Developers Association (AMDA), Husk Power’s ARPU, by comparison, is more than twice the industry average, Sinha said.
The company averaged 16% compounded annual growth in ARPU from 2017-2020, while ARPU growth in Q4 2020 was 22% compared to the same quarter in 2019.
Husk Power ended 2020 with more than 5,000 small business customers, 300% growth over 2019, and expects that number to surpass 12,500 over the next 12 months.
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Commenting on the financial results, the company’s board chairman, Brad Mattson, stated: “Husk proved in 2020 that it can prosper no matter how negative the business environment. It has already grown its asset base by 10x in just over two years, and is ready to scale another 10x to 1,000 minigrids. The Board has full confidence in the company’s leadership to secure the next round of funding and become the industry’s first profitable minigrid company.”