With much satisfaction and enthusiasm the IDDGIS pilot is entering Stage 6 (the final stage of the program, dubbed “delivery”). We are pleased to report that we have selected two excellent Market Partners with whom we will work in the coming months to bring two compelling solutions to market focused on serving low-income Indonesian’s energy needs.
The two most promising concepts that evolved through the program and ultimately emerged from Stage 5 were:
Smart Battery: A solar-powered battery system coupled with a wifi hotspot for use by small shopkeepers or families to power electric lights, charge cell phones, and provide wireless connectivity. This concept wins the prize for most evolved. The original concept that spawned it was based around an exchange program for deep cycle batteries.
Mobile Renewables Shop: Using a mobile platform (e.g. motorbike) to provide trained renewable energy device salespeople a means of reaching the most rural villages with environmentally friendly energy products. This is the most “meta” of concepts since it is not a renewable energy product itself, but rather a service that provides access to renewable energy products.
In addition to evolving the above concepts, we have also established partnerships with One Degree Solar (Smart Battery) and Kopernik (Mobile Renewables Shop) in order to move the concepts forward towards commercialization.
With One Degree Solar the IDDGIS program will be facilitating the introduction of their
solar home system, the Bright Box, into Indonesia by providing instrumental business
support, distribution partner introductions, and market research. We will also be
prototyping the incorporation of a wifi hotspot into the device and exploring design
modifications to tailor the product to the Indonesian environment.
With Kopernik the IDDGIS program will build on their ongoing Tech Agent program to explore options for incorporating a mobile sales platform into the program. The IDDGIS partners will dive deeply into streamlining the systems behind their last-mile distribution efforts and assist with the creation and protoyping of tools to be used by their Tech Agents.
Going To Market
Now that the concepts and Market Partners have been selected, IDDGIS is now busy providing support in the form of business and design services with the Market Partners as our clients. This handing over of concepts was built into the program from the start to ensure that the concepts received adequate commercial scrutiny and exit the IDDGIS program as fully-fledged products and services able to survive on their own in the wilds of the market.Our experiences at the confluence of international development and innovation indicate that this is a burgeoning trend – identifying and developing product or service concepts while supported by donor funds with the intention of transitioning the solution to a market partner that is able to commercialize the solution as a market-based offering. This intersection of development and capitalism promises to be a hot topic in coming years and we are excited to be navigating its conception and evolution as a part of this innovative World Bank program.