Radhika is based in Nairobi where she oversees global business development at Greenlight Planet, a company that designs and distributes high quality, affordable solar home energy solutions for under-electrified consumers in 40 countries. She joined Greenlight Planet’s Mumbai office in 2009 to expand the company’s presence to African and other Asian markets before moving to Kenya in 2012 to launch its flagship office in Africa. Prior to joining Greenlight, Radhika built a career in business development and consulting in the healthcare sector in the US. She also served as an Americorps VISTA volunteer focusing on public education reform in NYC and holds a BA in International Relations from Tufts University.

Radhika Thakkar

Board of Directors

d.light was founded in 2007 and is an early pioneer in the off-grid solar space. The company was driven by a mission to eradicate the kerosene lantern through the introduction of its first product line of affordable, high quality solar lanterns. Through continuous innovation the d.light product offering has evolved from one simple affordable, durable, solar lantern to a complete range of multi-use portable lights, Pay-Go solar home systems (SHS), a back-end Pay-Go software platform, and energy efficient DC appliances, enabling customers to leapfrog the grid with holistic energy solutions. d.light helped to establish GOGLA in 2012, and continues to play a central role in protecting the interests of end-users and Lighting Global quality-certified companies in multiple spheres.

Ned co-founded d.light in 2007. d.light has been a pioneer in off-grid solar energy and has impacted over 100 million people through a wide range of affordable solar products. Ned has been recognized by Forbes as one of the world’s top thirty social entrepreneurs.

Ned Tozun

Sarah Bieber leads strategic partnerships for the energy sector at Acumen, a nonprofit global venture fund that invests in early-stage companies tackling poverty. Over the last 12 years, Acumen has invested $24.3 million across 24 companies, which then raised $269 million in follow-on capital and impacted 109 million lives across 60+ countries in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

Acumen has a long history of providing patient investment capital for pioneering off-grid energy companies. It also adds value through technical assistance, management support, talent development, and a Lean Data approach to impact measurement and customer insights. Acumen sees active participation in the GOGLA Board as a unique opportunity to ensure that off-grid energy companies remain focused on providing access to electricity in the poorest markets.

Sarah, who previously led the Scaling Off-Grid Energy Grand Challenge at USAID/Power Africa, is a fixture in the off-grid energy industry. Her public- and private-sector experiences give her a unique perspective into strategic early-stage investments, market acceleration, and broader policy efforts

Sarah Bieber

Since 2016, Zuwa pioneered and has been a leading brand in solar pay-as-you-go in Malawi. Zuwa’s mission is to empower people to live better and businesses to succeed by providing affordable solar solutions and other life-changing products. We achieve this using credit tools and technology to determine appropriate payment plans.

Jones Ntaukira is co-founder and Managing Director for Zuwa Energy and is based in Lilongwe, Malawi.  He has over 12 years of experience spanning international development, consultancy, and manufacturing. Prior to co-founding Zuwa, Jones was Country Director for Empower Malawi, where he spent 6 years using the design thinking approach to design and lead the implementation of rural development programs in Malawi. He has also worked as a consultant and resource for youth and women entrepreneurship development for reputable organizations like SADC, British Council, Social Enterprise Academy, Gracia Marcel Trust, and Segal Family Foundation, and currently is on the board of strategic advisors for Flame Tree Initiative (USA).

Jones Ntaukira

Grégory Durand is Director of Business Development, Emerging Markets, at BioLite since April 2020.

He has an extensive experience of seventeen years in energy access and solar off-grid activities. He started his career at Total (one of the world’s top-ranked oil and gas companies) in 2005 where he held several positions as a Project Manager and Business Developer for off-grid and energy access programs. From 2005 to 2018 he worked on rural electrification projects (JVs with EDF) in Mali, Morocco, and South Africa (enabled access to electricity to ~100k households across the 3 countries), and on the foundations and development of the energy access social business program inside Total (that delivered millions of solar lanterns to end users across Africa and Asia while incubating new business models).

In 2018, he joined GOGLA, the global association for the off-grid solar energy industry, as Director of Operations, where he was in charge of Membership, Communication, Events, Data, HR, and Finance.

Since 2020, Gregory Durand leads a 12 person team and oversees BioLite’s existing and potential distribution partners. BioLite is a leading designer and manufacturer of off-grid energy products across sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.

Gregory is a graduate from the ESME Sudria Engineering School (Paris) in 2005

Grégory Durand

Since 2012, Persistent’s mission has been to invest in and build companies that provide access to energy to customers in frontier markets. Persistent also actively supports the development of the sector overall by publishing research and white papers on key issues. We believe that building commercially successful businesses in frontier markets that promote the use of renewable energy is a meaningful way to fight climate change and promote socio-economic development at the same time. Persistent is a team of passionate individuals who care. Eva Stolz is a Venture Builder at Persistent, and as such is continuously advising and working with off-grid energy companies on a range of topics, most importantly financial management. Eva is excited to add the insights and expertise she gained to help the entire sector succeed.

Eva Stolz

Emilien is CEO of SureChill since August 2021. He started his career at Ernst and Young. He very quickly moved into a series of commercial strategic roles, initially with Procter and Gamble, then working with companies ranging from small start-ups to large multinationals. Emilien has significant experience developing businesses in Africa, most recently building up a Senegal and Mali business for PEG Africa, one of the major providers of PayGo solar equipment in West Africa. During his time there, he grew the company from 5 employees to 200 enabling them to provide 20,000 households with life-changing solar equipment, having achieved profitability in the first year of operations. Emilien is truly a world citizen, having lived, worked, and studied in 8 different countries and has travelled to over 100 countries across all continents. His first African role was a director-level position with Flour Mills of Nigeria from 2015 to 2018. He is passionate about the off-grid energy sector and is delighted to represent SureChill on the GOGLA Board of Directors.

Emilien DiGennaro

Advisory Board

An innovator in the field of sustainable energy market development for more than 25 years, Russell leads IFC’s energy access advisory business where he works with the private sector to mobilize commercial investment to expand energy access for the underserved. His innovative work with commercial banks catalyzed IFC’s $1 billion sustainable energy finance business. Russell’s focus on market transformation provided the model for IFC’s approach to accelerate uptake of climate-friendly technology and expand access to energy and water. The creator of the World Bank Group’s Lighting Africa and Lighting Global program, and manager of IFC’s portfolio of energy access programs, Russell’s work focuses on innovative business models which enable commercially sustainable private sector delivery of energy and water services.

Prior to joining IFC in 2000, Russell was President of the International Institute for Energy Conservation. Previously, as Vice-President of Energy Management Services, he developed distributed generation and energy efficiency projects throughout the United States. While completing his studies in energy and natural resource policy and finance at the University of North Carolina and Harvard University/Kennedy School of Government, Russell did econometric modeling at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and worked on the first energy performance contract (ESCO) agreements in the United States at the law firm of Lane and Edson, LLC.

Russell Sturm

Richard Gomes works with public and private actors in the social investment ecosystem to explore new forms of collaboration as a way to accelerate innovation and collective impact.  He has led Shell Foundation’s strategic communications work since joining in 2009 and has researched, edited and co-authored several reports examining the lessons learned from their programmes.

Richard previously worked for the Shell Group across a variety of financial and commercial roles in the UK, Europe and Asia. He holds an Economics degree from the University of Warwick and a post-graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism.

Richard Gomes

George Kibala Bauer is a Director in the GSMA Digital Utilities programme. In this role, he focuses on developing and managing strategic partnerships, conducting research on the role of digital solutions and innovative partnerships in improving utility service provision, and supporting innovators in low- and middle-income countries in their journeys to scale.

Prior to joining the GSMA, George gained experience in consulting and strategic communications, economic research, development finance, and government affairs. George holds a MSc in international economic policy from Sciences Po Paris, a BA in economics from McGill University, as well as certificates in project finance, impact evaluation, and urban planning. He was also selected to take part in the On Deck Climate Tech Fellowship, a programme bringing together start-up and climate experts to catalyse climate tech innovations.

George Kibala Bauer

CDC Group is the world’s first impact investor with over 70 years of experience of successfully supporting the sustainable, long-term growth of businesses in Africa and South Asia. CDC is a UK champion of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals – the global blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for us all.

Geoffrey is an Investment Director and Head of the Energy Access and Efficiency team at CDC Group providing debt financing solutions for decentralised energy and resource efficiency. In addition to providing catalytic finance to companies, Geoffrey is engaged in cross-cutting initiatives to promote the sustainable development of the energy access sector. Prior to joining CDC, Geoffrey was a Chief Investment Officer in the private sector operations department at the African Development Bank where he was responsible for leading teams in corporate and project finance transactions in a variety of sectors, including energy, agribusiness and financial services. Geoffrey holds an MBA from HEC Paris.

Geoffrey Manley

David Stonehill is based in Pretoria, South Africa where he serves as Power Africa’s Beyond the Grid (BTG) Lead.  Power Africa is a US Government energy access initiative coordinated by the US Agency for International Development (USAID).  BTG is a Power Africa sub-initiative that supports the private sector and partner governments to deliver 30 million new off-grid connections in sub-Saharan Africa by 2030.  David has been a Foreign Service Officer with USAID since 2009, having previously served in Angola, Afghanistan, the Republic of Georgia, and Washington DC.

David Stonehill

In his current position, Alexander Haack is coordinating EnDevs engagement in over 20 countries and is heading the development of new thematic intervention areas.

Prior to his current position as Teamleader at EnDev Headquarters in Germany, Alexander Haack has worked for the GIZ in Turkey as Clustercoordinator for Energy and Climate.

Before that, he advised the Federal German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development on global sustainable Energy Policies.

He was part of the founding team of the International Renewable Energy Agency in Abu Dhabi and has a background in the private sector. Alexander Haack holds a Diploma in international relations and law.

Alexander Haack