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.
Panchabuta has often opined, that the off grid solar opportunities are much bigger than the utility scale solar power projects that seem to usually get all the attention. It will be worthy to note that companies like D.Light design have scaled rapidly in this area and as Panchabuta had noted, have impacted their second million lives in less than 8 months.
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.
d.light has recently been rated as one of the 5 hot startups to watch by Forbes India and according to the article,this year could be an inflection point for Kiran – the kerosene killer.
Panchabuta believes that, d.light might have just hit that inflection point that Forbes India talks about, when they hit their second million lives impacted in less than 8 months. With planned manufacturing capability expansions, it looks like they are really poised for take off in a market that seems to be heating up with new solar lighting solution providers entering into the space. Recent announcements have come from companies like MIC Electronics and newer companies like Simpa Networks are coming up with more innovative models.
Panchabuta is now glad to report that d.light has been shortlisted for the prestigious Financial Times ArcelorMittal Boldness in Business Awards in the Newcomer category. d.light designs shares the list with other companies like Groupon and Zynga. Congrats to Sam Goldman and the team at d.light Designs.