d.light is an international consumer products company serving people without access to reliable electricity. The company states is mission as “Enable households without reliable electricity to attain the same quality of life as those with electricity. We will begin by replacing every kerosene lantern with clean, safe and bright light.”.
The company launched their affordable product line in 2008 and has sold hundreds of thousands of solar lanterns to off-grid households in over 40 countries around the world. the d.light solar product line includes D.LIGHT S250, a premium solar lantern and mobile phone charger, D.LIGHT S10, the world’s most affordable solar lantern, and Solata S380, a high-quality solar task lamp.
d.light is financed by leading social enterprise funds Omidyar Network, Acumen Fund and Gray Matters Capital; with investment from prestigious venture capital firms including Nexus India Capital, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Garage Technology Ventures, the Mahindra Group.
A couple of days back, the company announced that it has impacted two million lives around the world through its solar-powered lighting products. The milestone was reached only eight months after d.light impacted its one-millionth customer. It is even more impressive that they expect to touch the next million even faster given the growth rate that they are witnessing.
“We’re very proud to know that two million people around the world are benefitting from our products,” said CEO Sam Goldman. “That means hundreds of thousands of families are no longer reliant on kerosene lanterns or candles for light. They can save money every month, their children can study at night, and their homes are safer.”
While benefits experienced by individual customers are significant, the collective impact of d.light’s products is even more notable. Based on independent market studies of kerosene costs, current d.light customers will cumulatively save about USD60 million over the lifetime of the products. Increased productivity resulting from access to bright lighting will put another USD65 million into the pockets of poor rural families. The combined savings and increased income will provide more options for households in key areas such as health, education, communication and transport.
In addition, d.light products sold thus far, which replace one or two kerosene lanterns each, will reduce carbon emissions by at least 82,600 tons.
Solar lamps have been witnessing huge sales in the rural market and apart from individual adaption has also been sold to villages under various schemes including Remote Village Electrification Program and other programs under the JNNSM.
Typically the return on investment for a solar lamp varies between 6 months to 12 months depending on the usage, cost of solar lamp and cost of kerosene/candle and this has led to solar lamps being used not only in remote rural India, but also in urban markets, street side vendors and semi-urban businesses instead of the traditional petromax lights.