At the Africa Bitcoin conference held in Accra, Jack Dorsey, the co-founder and former CEO of Twitter expressed interest in a Bitcoin mining project he has invested in.
GridLess closes 2 million round of financing from Block and VC Stillmark
From December 5 to 7, bitcoiners from across the continent met with various market players (investors, entrepreneurs, developers, etc.) in Ghana for the Africa Bitcoin Conference. Jack Dorsey and Ms. Maingri, the co-founder of the GridLess project were also present.
GridLess is a project that is already bringing electricity to rural communities in Africa through Bitcoin and it caught Jack’s ear. On Tuesday, December 6, GriLess announced that it had raised $2 million in an investment round led by venture capital firm Stillmark and Block, a payment company, led by Jack Dorsey.
The investment will allow the company to fund new mining facilities.
Africa needs affordable electricity. With this investment, along with our partners, we can accelerate our deployment, knowing we have both the capital and strategic support.Erik Hersman, CEO of Gridless.
Earlier this year, GridLess launched five projects in rural Kenya with HydroBoxn, an African hydropower company. Three are already operational.
By using surplus electricity from the mini-dams, GridLess has already succeeded in electrifying one Kenyan village and reducing the electricity bill. It has gone from $10 to $4. The project plans to expand to other parts of East Africa in the near future.
Bitcoin mining helps electrify Africa
Africa has immense renewable energy potential, with 17% of it generated from hydroelectricity. Yet, to this day, more than 40% of the population lives in darkness due to a lack of access to electricity. This situation is justified by the extremely high cost of installing hydroelectric power plants.
Due to the high cost of installing the necessary infrastructure for the distribution of electricity, only a small amount of electricity is used.
Gridless was born from the desire to give everyone the chance to access such a primordial need. The company then opted for the idea of using the potential of Bitcoin mining to move forward. Indeed, although Bitcoin mining is considered an environmental disaster, in Africa it indirectly finances hydroelectric power and above all provides access to electricity.
GridLess is not the only company in this sector. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, bitcoin mining in Virunga National Park has funded the installation of power lines to electrify rural areas.
This event comes at a time when the market is going through an ordeal. Indeed, the price of bitcoin has lost more than 70% of its value since its all-time high of $69,000 in November 2021. Against this backdrop, the cost of mining Bitcoin appears to be approaching its current price. This does not benefit miners who are currently struggling to survive at all.
Coming from a journalism university background, I came across Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies not long ago.
The potential of the Blockchain seduced me and I made it my research topic.