SEFA was established in 2011 at the African Development Bank with Denmark’s commitment of US$56 million to allow the Bank to scale-up its engagement in the small to medium-sized renewable energy and energy efficiency space.

In 2013, SEFA was transformed into a multi-donor facility with an initial US$5 million commitment from the United States as part of a multi-year engagement under President Obama’s Power Africa Initiative and, more recently, the United Kingdom joined SEFA with 15 million GBP and Italy with 7.4 million EUR.

SEFA is one of Africa’s instruments supporting the SE4All Initiative and cooperates closely with the Africa Hub. SEFA operates through three financing components all focused on unlocking private investments in small to medium scale sustainable energy projects: 

  1. grants to facilitate the preparation of bankable projects;
  2. equity investments to bridge the financing gap and infuse managerial capacity. SEFA played a key role in structuring the first truly Pan-African US$200 million private equity fund focused on renewable energy, the Africa Renewable Energy Fund (AREF), contributing US$35 million; and
  3. support to public sector institutions in improving the enabling environment for private sector investments.

SEFA and the SE4All Africa Hub works together to promote renewables energies in Africa and are jointly developing a regional Green Mini-Grids Market Development Program

(link to SEFA page on AfDB.org)