Terms of Reference: Technical Services for supporting renewable energy sector during COVID-19

Terms of Reference

Technical Services for supporting renewable energy sector during COVID-19

April 2020

1.0 The AECF

The AECF (Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund) is a nonprofit institution supporting early and growth-stage businesses – through the provision of patient capital – to innovate, create jobs, leverage investments and markets in an effort to create resilience and sustainable incomes for rural poor and marginalised communities in Africa.

AECF’s strategy is focused on agribusiness/agriculture and renewable energy sectors with increased support to climate technologies, deepened focus on gender, youth, and employment, aimed at attaining the institution’s vision of ‘A Prosperous and Enterprising Rural Africa’.

Since 2008, AECF has invested in 268 businesses across sub-Sahara Africa focusing on Agribusiness, Renewable Energy and Climate Technologies. As of 2018, we have impacted more than 17 million lives and created over 12,000 jobs and leveraged over US$ 750 million in matching funds from the private sector.

AECF is headquartered in Kenya with offices in Cote d’ Ivoire and Tanzania.

2.0 Technical consultants – supporting renewable energy sector SMEs during COVID-19

Across sub-Saharan Africa, many households are already feeling the impact of the novel coronavirus and are unable to go on with their usual occupations. Anti-pandemic measures such as social distancing, curfews, travel restrictions and border closures are increasingly being implemented across Africa. The adverse impacts of these measures are expected to have lasting ramifications months and probably years after the emergency has been managed.

The anti-pandemic measures will inevitably stress the operations of early and growth-stage Decentralized Energy Access Companies (DESCOs) as most companies struggle to conduct in-person sales, collect payments and distribute products leading to a reduction on gross revenues and collections. This will, in turn, affect the companies’ ability to meet their short-term obligations. Declining revenue and reduced funding for off-grid companies mean that jobs will be cut and incomes reduced for the households that depend on these jobs.

The anticipated job losses are likely to delay the resumption of operations, as companies would have to re-hire and re-train staff.

On the consumer side, reduced economic activity during the COVID-19 pandemic will adversely influence customers’ ability to pay for energy products and services. As most off-grid companies integrate a consumer payment plan to their target customers to make products within the reach of households whose income is seasonal, these families are likely to default on their payments as they fall due. They, therefore, run the risk of being disconnected by the DESCOs.

3.0 Project Objectives and Rationale

The AECF seeks to provide targeted support to companies that are providing clean energy products and/or services in Kenya. This is to enable them to sustain business continuity and cope with the economic slowdown caused by COVID-19 pandemic while preserving the development impact they have created.

The specific objectives are:

· Preserve development impact by providing support to companies that are increasing access to de-centralized renewable energy solutions in Kenya. This includes access to clean cooking fuels and technologies, excluding LPG.

· Reduce the adverse impact of COVID-19 on retention of companies’ local staff, customers and supply chains.

· Guarantee access to clean energy as an essential service (lighting as well as cooing in homes and health facilities) during the COVID-19 emergency. Promote access to other products and services that help rural people and smallholder farmers adapt to the adverse economic and health effects of COVID-19.

· Provision of targeted technical assistance to investees in the off-grid energy sector to enable them to develop solid strategies of coping with the COVID-19 pandemic. These include among others: business continuity plans, capital restructuring, innovations in sales and marketing.

· Lower perceived investor risk and retain existing commitments to investees by funders.

· Understand the impacts of COVID-19 on low-income households.

4.0 This engagement

The AECF is seeking a consultant to provide technical support working alongside its programme management team.

4.1 Specific Duties and Responsibilities of the Consultant:

a. Provide technical support to the AECF program team in review of applications, shortlisting and selection of companies;

b. Support the AECF team in updating the database of companies in Kenya investing in the decentralised energy space. This includes access to clean cooking fuels and technologies, excluding LPG;

c. Provide support to the AECF team in conducting desktop due diligence;

d. Provide support in developing project one-pagers for the shortlisted companies, for further presentation to technical investment committees;

e. Work with the AECF team to provide the necessary technical and logistical information required during the programme period;

f. Support the team in developing milestone and milestones for the applicant companies; and

g. Any additional tasks will be assigned by the REF Team Lead from time to time.

5.0 Duration of Service

The task should not take more than 30 days consultancy days, in May, June and July 2020 and is expected to commence by 12 May 2020.

6.0 Management

The Technical Consultant will report to the REF Team Lead.

7.0 Outputs and Reporting Requirements

Produce a technical report regarding REF at the close of the engagement.

8.0 Proposal submission

Interested consultancy firms and individuals are requested to submit their technical and financial proposals to [email protected] Applications will be reviewed on as they are submitted with the closing date 8 May 2020 by 5.00 p.m E.A.T

a. The Subject of the email should read “Technical support for REF”. The AECF shall not be liable for not opening proposals that are submitted with a different subject.

b. Interested and qualified individual consultants are invited to submit their proposal(s) comprising of the following:

o An understanding of the consultancy requirements.

o Detailed reference list indicating the scope and magnitude of similar assignments.

o Relevant services undertaken in the past five (5) years.

o Financial proposal showing clearly the budgeted cost for the work to be conducted by the consultant under the scope of work above.

c. Technical and Financial proposals will need to be submitted as separate documents. Financial proposals will not be opened until the conclusion of the technical evaluation and then only for those proposals that are deemed qualified and responsive.

d. The Financial proposals shall include all applicable taxes quoted separately. If taxes are not mentioned in the financial proposal, The AECF shall consider that they are included in the prices provided.

9.0 Qualifications

· At least 5 years’ experience in development, management and/or monitoring of Renewable Energy programmes in sub-Saharan Africa.

· An in-depth understanding of the RE industry in Kenya.

· Experience in Development Finance, Credit Appraisal and Short-term investments.

· Demonstrated capacity to deliver in the timeframe outlined.

· Current placement in Kenya is preferable.

10.0 Evaluation Criteria

The following criteria will be used for the evaluation:

No. Criteria for Assessment-Marks

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1.Understanding of the terms of reference-10**

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  • Description of problem to be solved-5

  • Understanding of what AECF is expecting from the work-5

2.Methodology and work plan-15**

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  • The relevance of the methodology proposed to the needs of the assignment-10

  • Adequacy of the work plan, including key deliverables and capacity to deliver within a realistic timeline based on the consultancy days designated for the task-5

3.Technical experience of staff offered-45**

**

  • Relevant tertiary level qualification and years of professional experience-10

  • Geographical Reach: Demonstrate relevant geographical experience, knowledge and reach to effectively carry out the consultancy-10

  • Registration and other relevant statutory documents (this applies to institutional consultants).-5

  • Evidence of similar previous experience in the last 5 years including reference list indicating the scope and magnitude of similar assignments;-20

4.Financial Proposal-30**

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-Clarity, relevance, reality to market of value/value for money of cost for the assignment (inclusive of any applicable tax)

Total Score-100

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N.B: In deciding the final selection of qualified bidder, the technical quality of the proposal will be given a weighting of 70% based on the evaluation criteria above. Only the financial proposal of those bidders who qualify technically will be opened. The financial proposal will be allocated a weighting of 30% and the proposals will be ranked in terms of total points scored.

11.0 Disclaimer

The AECF reserves the right to determine the structure of the process, number of short-listed participants, the right to withdraw from the proposal process, the right to change this timetable at any time without notice and reserves the right to withdraw this tender at any time, without prior notice and without liability to compensate and/or reimburse any party.

How to apply

Interested consultancy firms and individuals are requested to submit their technical and financial proposals to [email protected] Applications will be reviewed on as they are submitted with the closing date 8 May 2020 by 5.00 p.m E.A.T

a. The Subject of the email should read “Technical support for REF”. The AECF shall not be liable for not opening proposals that are submitted with a different subject.

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