Claro image2

Today's need: Solar power based solutions

Claro Energy

1. No Poverty 5. Gender Equality 7. Affordable and Clean Energy 13. Climate Action

Overview

Claro Energy, which was established in 2011, has solar-powered water pumping solutions in off-grid rural communities that support agriculture and drinking water needs. The company provides a full range of solar pumping solutions, that range from 0.5 to 10 horsepower, has AC and DC solar pumps, and Surface and Submersible pumps, across applications such as Irrigation, Drinking Water, Aeration, and Fisheries. Claro Energy has benefited approximately 100,000 individuals in India through its installation footprint, which spans across 14 states.

Authors

Karan Sutaria

Karan Sutaria

Kamaldeep Singh

Kamaldeep Singh

Shivam Shrivastava

Shivam Shrivastava

Vineet Arora

Vineet Arora

School

Goa Institute of Management

Goa Institute of Management

Professor

Divya Singhal

Divya Singhal

Innovation

Claro Energy provides portable solar pumping solutions as pay-per-use irrigation service. The portable design makes irrigation more economical, more convenient, and on-demand. With no upfront capital requirements, the service suits the demands of a wide spectrum of farmers who do not own pumps. The farmer only has to dial a toll-free number, and the irrigation service is delivered straight to the field.

Today's need: Solar power based solutions

Inspiration

Co-founders Kartik Wahi and Soumitra Mishra were classmates in Kellogg School of Management, US. The and their only goal was to be entrepreneurs. Kartik says, “We were keen on identifying under-served markets and making a breakthrough. One day, we were discussing many ideas over coffee and that’s how we stumbled upon clean energy, which was a theme in vogue both in US and India. But that’s where the similarities end. In the US, the efforts of reducing carbon footprint is driving solar whereas in India, it is inadequate access to energy that is forcing our population to rely on diesel, and that’s precisely why we are now exploring it as a solution.” They were later joined by Gaurav Kumar.

It took the trio 7-8 months of intense research to figure out where they wanted to be in the clean energy space. After that research, they decided to tackle problems in the area that continues to be the mainstay in India’s economy- agriculture, that is, using solar as an off-grid solution.

Kartik says, “At that time, even the term ‘solar pumping’ was non-existent, leave aside thinking of it as a solution. We instantly knew this is where we wanted to be.”

Overall impact

Claro Energy aims to make water affordable and readily available for farmers and rural communities of India.

The company’s solar pumping solutions bring meaningful impact across stakeholders by:

• Increasing each farmer's income

• Reducing the cost of irrigation by half

• Cutting down diesel fuel consumption significantly

• Building sustainable and prosperous rural economies

The company's initiatives have also resulted in women empowerment.

Business benefit

The company has received many awards over the years since its inception. The biggest award the company has received though comes from the smiles that are put on farmers’ and their family members' faces every day. These smiles come about because the company has provided them with cheaper and better solar-powered water pumping solutions.

Because the business model is changing the lives of rural people in a positive manner, in 2015 they were able to get a 2 million credit facility from RBL and were awarded USD 500,000 by USAID. This award was based on the company's performance and the impact they had on the SIDBI venture capital fund in 2018.

Social and environmental benefit

Employing solar panels instead of unclean diesel to extract water has significance in terms of reduction in carbon footprint. Climate change is real. Large scale deployment of Decentralized Renewable Energy will reverse it. Agriculture uses some of the most fossil fuels, less though than that from the automotive industry. Installing clean irrigation that uses solar energy can have the potential to dramatically reduce the diesel/grid dependence on agriculture.

Climate change impacts everyone, from the developed to the developing, from the rich to the poor, across all races and religions. Claro Energy is deploying Distributed Solar Energy at scale to offset the use of fossil fuel and to combat this collective threat to all inhabitants of our amazing planet. Historically, women in villages in India have had to travel miles in search of water which wastes their time and energy in the process. To reverse this wasted energy, nearby access to water becomes a crucial factor.

Claro Energy has been working to ensure a proper supply of water to various areas such as Gouduniposh, Odisha and thereby has beem impacting hundreds of women.

Interviews

Gaurav Kumar, Co-Founder & Director

Kartik Wahi, Co-Founder & Director

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Claro Energy

Claro Energy

IN

Business Website: https://claroenergy.in/

Year Founded: 2011

Number of Employees: 51 to 200

Claro Energy provides solar-powered water pumping solutions in off-grid rural communities to make more drinking water and to address agricultural needs. The company has a full range of solar pumping solutions that range from 0.5 to 10 horsepower, has AC and DC solar pumps, and also has Surface and Submersible pumps, all across applications such as Irrigation, Drinking Water, Aeration, and Fisheries. Claro Energy has benefited approximately 100,000 individuals in India through its installation footprint, which spans across 14 states.