Company celebrates Earth Day with the launch of a digital token to accelerate global transition to solar power and a first-of-a-kind Solar Project Insurance Fund to minimise financial risk
Sun Exchange, a blockchain-based solar micro-leasing marketplace and African FinTech Awards winner, has introduced SUNEX, a new digital network token built for the Sun Exchange platform. The SUNEX network token is utilised in the new Sun Exchange Solar Project Insurance Fund (SPIF), designed to minimise risk and unlock financing for previously financially underserved solar projects.
Sun Exchange provides members a unique opportunity to earn income while helping to bring solar power to developing global regions. Through its online platform, members can purchase solar photovoltaic (PV) cells for approximately USD 10.00 per cell and lease them to be installed in solar projects for businesses, hospitals, schools and other organisations in Southern Africa, the Middle East and other sunny developing regions. Solar cell owners receive lease rental payments, paid optionally in fiat currency or cryptocurrency, while offtakers enjoy the benefits of affordable clean energy.
The new SUNEX digital token and SPIF are the latest Sun Exchange innovations designed to maximise benefits for Sun Exchange members, while removing major obstacles for financing solar energy installations in developing regions.
The SUNEX digital token is an ERC20 standard token built on the Ethereum blockchain. It is designed to make solar asset ownership through Sun Exchange more affordable and rewarding.
Features of the SUNEX token include:
- Opportunities to receive up to a 20 percent return in tokens by staking SUNEX tokens into the Sun Exchange SPIF
- Access to discounts and lease bonuses when using the Sun Exchange platform
- Priority access to new solar projects on the platform
- A gamified rewards programme, which guides users towards maximising the diversification and social impact of their solar cell portfolio
- Providing a secure financial environment for members is a top priority for Sun Exchange. Given the company’s rigorous approach to due diligence, all Sun Exchange solar project offtakers to date have proven reliable.
“The new Sun Exchange SPIF creates a new layer of security and reliability as the company grows, stimulating investment in impactful solar projects,” said Larry Temlock, Co-Founder and CFO, Sun Exchange. “The SPIF is the world’s first crowd-sourced default insurance fund for clean energy projects in emerging markets.”
Highlights of the Sun Exchange SPIF include:
- Safeguards Sun Exchange solar cell owners against costs associated with potential solar project defaults
- Unlocks the flow of capital into emerging markets Commercial & Industrial (C&I) solar projects, accelerating critical economic and social development
- Sun Exchange members can grow their token holdings by staking SUNEX tokens into the SPIF
“Small commercial and industrial solar projects can drive urgent economic development by powering organisations such as hospitals, schools, small and medium businesses in developing regions. However, with aid organisations and NGOs primarily funding residential solar, and large banks and financiers only backing large and utility-scale projects, C&I solar projects fall into a major funding gap,” said Abraham Cambridge, Founder and CEO, Sun Exchange (pictured). “With the new SUNEX network token and SPIF, Sun Exchange is leveraging blockchain and the crypto-economy to further bridge that funding gap and address a very real global challenge that can impact the lives of millions.”
“We have invested in the Sun Exchange and purchased SUNEX tokens, because we believe in the fundamental value of the business, and in the healthy growth of the network as people all over the world embrace renewable energy,” said David Orban, Founder and Managing Partner, Network Society Ventures, and Advisor to Sun Exchange. “The innovation of coupling blockchain with solar energy decentralises renewable energy funding and production, democratising access and setting the stage for the long term growth of Sun Exchange’s activities.”
To date, Sun Exchange has provided financing for four solar projects throughout South Africa, which are now fully operational. The crowdsale for its fifth project, which will provide power for environmental NGO South South North, recently sold out in a record-breaking two weeks.
“What is fantastic about the Sun Exchange model is that it benefits us as the recipient of power and it benefits the people buying the solar cells and it's also a win for the environment,” said Carl Wesslink, Director, South South North. “Their unprecedented approach to solar financing can achieve installation at scale on a commercially sustainable basis. This is the catalyst required for realising our (distributed) energy revolution.”
The SUNEX network token will be available to existing Sun Exchange members and the general public through a public token sale event, starting April 22nd, 2018 at 12:00 p.m. UCT. The Sun Exchange SPIF will be established shortly after the close of the token sale.