The global leader in pay-as-you-go solar power is downsizing to stay profitable
By Abdi Latif Dahir
M-Kopa, the Kenyan pay-per-use solar power provider, is downsizing in a bid to improve its competitiveness, ensure long-term sustainability, and increase return for investors.
The Nairobi-headquartered company said it laid off more than 150 of its over 1,000 staff members as part of a company-wide restructuring that took place at the end of 2017. The reduction targeted almost all departments and management levels, and reduced the global headcount of staff, whose members are spread across Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and the United Kingdom, to 850. It also said it is outsourcing some of its business functions to “capable and cost-competitive partners” in order to concentrate on improving its own internal operations.
Describing the reduction as “regrettable,” chief executive officer Jesse Moore brushed off speculation that it is completely divesting operations from Kenya, a criticism that has surfaced online since the announcement. Most of the controversy is around the fact M-Kopa is outsourcing some of its operations to a British company Applicita, which was founded by its acting chief technology officer John Kattenhorn.
Photo courtesy of Sameer Halai.