Don’t leave 30% of the world behind

PUBLISHED: Wed, 18 Jan 2017 15:22:18 GMT

The coming ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ is set to drive the convergence of technologies that blur the lines between the physical, digital and biological spectrums, but if access to reliable energy, banking and the internet are neglected, 30 percent of the world’s population are in danger of being left behind.

To ensure that these basic economic tools don’t go overlooked amongst responsive and responsible leaders at this year’s World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, d.light co-founder and CEO Ned Tozun plans to discuss progress of decentralized energy systems for those living at the bottom of the pyramid with leaders working to improve the state of the world. Throughout Africa, Asia and Latin America, this revolution is taking hold and providing economic benefit to local populations.

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Habitual spending on kerosene, candles, generators and other fossil fuel-powered energy sources creates a massive drain on economic and social development. Solar-powered products offer safer, less expensive, more reliable, and higher quality energy solutions. In eight short years, transformations in off-grid solar have led to a significant improvement in the delivery of energy access. As of June 2016, 100 million people have moved off of kerosene and other fossil fuel sources for lighting, resulting in $4.33 billion in energy-related savings.

“Progress in energy access through off-grid solar can catalyze a chain of events that move the developing world into new forms of financial inclusion and internet connectivity, which will in turn significantly increase GDP,” said d.light CEO Ned Tozun. “Growing these sectors requires massive support. Attending the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting gives us the opportunity to engage with leaders from all walks of life, and we look forward to collaborating on solutions for societal and global concerns that have been neglected for too long.”

As a leading provider of off-grid solar solutions, d.light also announced today the raise of $10.5 million in investment from Norfund, Beyond the Grid, and Shell Foundation. This brings the company’s total raise in the past four months to $40 million.

Since its founding in 2007, d.light has impacted over 65 million people through its sales over 15 million solar light and power products in 62 countries. The company continues to sell hundreds of thousands of units per month, while maintaining excellent quality at scale. d.light has a goal to impact 100 million lives by 2020.

The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting takes place in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland between January 17 – 20, 2017. It remains the foremost creative force for engaging the world’s top leaders in collaborative activities to shape the global, regional and industry agendas at the beginning of each year.

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