NOTS improves lives and preserves nature in Sub-Saharan Africa by building renewable energy enterprises. As an ‘impact enterprise’ NOTS aims at maximal social and environmental impact, while realizing enough profit to provide investors with a healthy return on equity.
NOTS was founded in 2003 by Bart Hartman, a serial entrepreneur and former McKinsey & Company consultant. He founded NOTS with the belief that entrepreneurship could reduce poverty more effectively than traditional charity or aid.
In its early years, NOTS co-founded, together with Oxfam and ASN Bank, Triple Jump BV, a microfinance investment management firm with EUR 300 million under management today.
Through microfinance NOTS learned about the lack of access to sustainable energy in Africa and was motivated to develop business solutions. After several years of pilot projects NOTS launched two renewable energy businesses in Mali in 2011: sales and distribution of solar lamps and sustainable charcoal production. In 2014 NOTS opened its second office in Rwanda.
In just a few years NOTS has impacted over 325.000 lives with solar lamps and offset 30.000 tons of CO2. NOTS also completed a pilot project to test the Blue Charcoal business model.
NOTS is now focusing on scaling up both businesses in order to improve lives across Africa and reach our ambitious goals – to replace all kerosene lamps with solar lamps and to make all charcoal production sustainable in Sub-Saharan Africa by 2025.
Because of the safety and economic situation in Mali we took the very difficult decision to close the activities of NOTS in Mali in August 2015.
NOTS improves lives in Sub-Saharan Africa by building renewable energy enterprises. As an ‘impact enterprise’ NOTS aims at maximal social and environmental impact, while realizing enough profit to provide investors with a healthy return on equity.
Nearly 600 million people in Africa live without electricity. Instead, they have to use lighting sources like kerosene lamps which are expensive and dangerous. NOTS Blue Power is a financially sustainable business model that gets high-quality, affordable solar lamps to people that live off-grid - saving families money, improving their health and reducing CO2 emissions.
About 650 million people cook with charcoal in Africa and nearly 12 million people work in the charcoal production sector. Charcoal has major economic value. Yet the production of it is causing Africa’s forests to disappear at an alarming rate and high levels of methane emissions. NOTS Blue Charcoal is a business model that stops the environmental damage caused by charcoal production and increases and diversifies the incomes of charcoal producers.
NOTS was founded with the belief that an entrepreneurial approach to development is more efficient, sustainable and effective than traditional aid. We aim to solve social and environmental issues that affect a large number of people (100 million+) in developing countries by building impact enterprises.
Key elements of our strategy are: