As the first European B Corporation, WakaWaka went public this week and offers shares via NPEX, the Dutch financing platform for SMEs. B Corporations are independently certified organizations “that use business as a force for good,” said the organizations. Other examples are Ben&Jerry´s, Tony´s Chocolonely, Patagonia and Dopper. WakaWaka has one of the highest ´B Corp scores in the world, said WakaWaka, and has been listed as Best for the World B Corp since 2016.
Approximately 1.2 billion people across the globe do not have access to electricity, primarily using candles and kerosene lamps. “These are not only dangerous, polluting and expensive, but also damaging to people’s health,” says WakaWaka co-founder Maurits Groen. “Light and electricity have a profound impact on people’s lives: on school results, livelihood and prosperity. That’s what motivates us.” WakaWaka uses the world’s largest free energy source to provide a sustainable alternative: the sun.
For every consumer who buys a sustainable, ultra-efficient solar light or power bank, WakaWaka improves access to light and power for at least one person living off grid. Outdoor enthusiasts can charge their phones in the sun while families without electricity can utilize safe power at night to cook, work and study.
The company’s revenues increased by nearly 40% compared to 2016. The number of stores in Europe and the United States has tripled to more than 600 across both continents in 2017, and the company expects this growth to continue over the next few years. It is WakaWaka’s goal to have impacted the lives of 5 million people by 2020 and become the leading social brand in sustainable solar solutions. In order to continuously improve its impact, the company requires growth capital. Hence, WakaWaka will offer part of its shares via NPEX. The company is hoping to raise 2.5 million euros.
“An investment in WakaWaka means an investment in the lives of millions of people around the world. We are proud to provide light and power to well over 1.3 million people in off-grid areas already, but we are just getting started,” says Camille van Gestel, co-founder of WakaWaka.