CapeTalk

Khaya power

Biography

The cry of the revolution has always been ‘power to the people’, which is a nice sentiment, but becomes a lot less practical in those areas where people have no electricity. That is, until Khaya Power launched its innovative power charging station concept. Using a recycled five litre container fitted with a 12-volt battery and a DC socket, in the form of a cigarette lighter, Khaya has created an energy source powered by solar energy. These units can also be powered with DC and 220v AC power.Billy Hadlow, the owner of the business, says that his interest in renewable energy began many years ago and combines nicely with his passion for taking disadvantaged people off the ‘paraffin grid’. To this end, he adds, the idea is that spaza shops receive a charging station, with customers then buying charged units that can be used to power lights and appliances. Once the power is depleted, the unit is exchanged for a recharged one – for a nominal fee - at the spaza shop. Billy believes that by franchising this solar energy concept to the spaza owners, those with no access to electricity will definitely win. End customers will save on the cost of paraffin and cellphone charging, while the shop owners can generate up to R4 000 turnover per month, per charging station.He says that his ultimate goal is to have Khaya Power in 150 000 homes, with around a 1 000 franchises in spaza shops. To do this, suggests Billy, his company needs to continue its work in educating the disadvantaged around the benefits of using solar energy.