By Oke Peter
The African Development Bank (AfDB) and EnergyNet, organisers of the Africa Energy Forum (AEF), have created the ‘African Utility of Future’ competition enabling teams to compete for a $5,000 prize.
The Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth Complex (PEVP) of AfDB will participate at AEF2020, mainstreaming the concept of: “The African Utility of the Future” – the theme for the 2019 AfDB-APUA CEO Leadership Forum. This is a continuation on the concept of “The Second Wave of Power Sector Reforms” as it relates to the Sustainable Utility Transformation (SUT) agenda of the Bank – a key component that will continue to drive the Bank’s ‘Light Up and Power Africa’ strategic objective.
The competition seeks to inspire team-building and innovative ideas to transform current utilities into Advanced, Futuristic, SMART, Sustainable and Agile African Power Utilities.
The overarching principle is to create a platform for current asset-owners to come up with innovative, realistic, practical and implementable ideas for “leap-frogging” existing utilities in the future. The design will be grounded around the five pillars of the Sustainable Utility Transformation (SUT) agenda:
• Improved Sector Governance
• Least Cost Integrated Resource Planning
• Human Capital Development
• Sector Reforms & Financial Sustainability
• Smart Partnerships & performance monitoring.
The competition opened on 8th October with a submission deadline of 6th November 2020.
Team entries will remain anonymous, and the use of team names are encouraged. As the objective is to solicit realistic and practical ideas relevant to African utilities currently operating, only submissions from teams representing current Distribution asset owners will be allowed.
These Distribution asset owners can be the public or private sector, and on-, off- or mini-grid based.
Only the winning team will be named, unless (based on the quality of the submissions) the judges feel that the proposals of the 2nd and 3rd place teams should be mentioned.
Finalists will be announced on 11th November, with the winning team announced on 13th November – the closing date of AEF 2020.