Off-Grid Appliances Business Models Research Project

Details of the Energy Saving Trust’s request for proposals for the Off-Grid Appliances Business Models Research Project.

The Off-Grid Appliances Business Models Research Project has been commissioned by the Low Energy Inclusive Appliance (LEIA) programme with funding from UK aid and IKEA Foundation. The UK aid funded LEIA programme aims to accelerate the availability, affordability, efficiency and performance of a range of low energy inclusive appliances. The LEIA programme is part of the Efficiency for Access Coalition which aims to accelerate global energy access through energy-efficient appliances and is jointly managed by Energy Saving Trust and CLASP.

Within the LEIA programme, there is a research mandate that includes consumer, market, impacts, and technical research activities. The off-grid energy sector, particularly the plug and play solar home system kits sector, has seen various innovations in technology, access to finance, and manufacturer or distribution company business models over the past years, and these have been extensively covered in published literature. A key example being the prominence of the Pay-as-you-go (PAYGo) model that allows households to pay for the costs of solar energy systems through regular, affordable instalments via a remote locking mechanism to help enforce payments. However, for off-grid appliances, there has not been enough published about business strategies to inform organizations involved in the sale of these appliances. The Energy Saving Trust therefore proposes to launch this research with the objective of bridging this literature gap by investigating and publishing ‘shareable’ innovative strategies in appliance led organizations (with their consent) that can help make end products more affordable and/or affect the appliance organizations’ bottom lines profitably.

How to apply and deadlines:

Interested parties are required to submit two separate proposals: A Technical Proposal and a Financial Proposal. The files should be named as per the following example: “[Contractor Name] _ [Technical/Financial] Proposal_RFP [Name]”.

The Technical Proposal should not exceed 15 pages in length and must include the following elements:

• A detailed approach and methodology for implementation and management of the project. Include a description of the role of each team member if applicable. [2 to 5 pages]

• A summary of qualifications of key personnel that will be engaged in the assignment. Technical knowledge in both household and productive use off-grid appliances or enabling technologies for appliances applicable in this project is an advantage as well as academic research qualification e.g. PhD/MRes (Master of Research). [2 to 5 pages]

• A summary of understanding of successful business models related experience or experience in publishing case studies in appliances, and related experiences of developing the type of database as mentioned in this proposal, including any experience in energy access for off-and weak grid communities. [2 to 4 pages]

The Financial Proposal must include the following elements:

• Detailed budget estimate (in US Dollars) outlining fees and expected expenses for the duration of the project. Detailed budget should include all direct and indirect cost estimates for executing the project, detail specifically:

• a breakdown (in days) of the level of effort associated with the activities and a daily rate.

The Energy Saving Trust team will evaluate proposals received from respondents. Selection of the candidate will be based upon the following criteria:

a) Robustness of methodology

b) Relevant qualifications, including working knowledge of the off-grid energy sector, and broad technical knowledge in mechanical/electrical engineering and business models.

c) Experience in managing and working with diverse stakeholder groups to achieve consensus

d) Total cost and value for money

e)A due diligence process performed by EST on both financial and safeguarding.

The deadline for application is 17:00 GMT, January 31, 2020. Proposals must be emailed to David Angelini at david.angelini@est.org.uk.

All questions may be addressed to Richa Goyal at richa.goyal@est.org.uk and Andrew Tod at andrew.tod@est.org.uk. The last date for submission of questions related to this RFP is January 20, 2020. We request all inquiries be made by e-mail and not by phone.