Through the BipBop programme, Schneider Electric develops access to safe, reliable, affordable and clean energy for people at the Base of the Pyramid worldwide.
2014 – Up to 30% of BoP households income are spent on energy each month*, 5 times more than in Western countries. The key issue is the lack of appropriate equipment. The BipBop programme provides people at the BoP with sustainable access to energy by developing an adequate offer: lighting solutions, solar home solutions or water pumping systems for instance. Those products and solutions bring energy to people with no access to electricity or a very bad access to electricity.
The objective is to make 1,000,000 households at the Base of the Pyramid have access to energy by the end of 2014.
- Source: the next 4 billion: Market size and business strategy at the Base of the Pyramid
2014 – One of the key issues for BoP households is the skills and expertise shortage. The BipBop programme addresses this by developing technical and business training programmes to provide sustainable access to energy. The idea is to train young people from the Base of the Pyramid in energy management related skills and sponsor them, ie. create and/or deploy training programmes in tertiary or industrial electricity, electrical engineering, automatisms, renewable energies at a regional or national level. In partnership with local or international non-profit organisations, this BipBop training programme brings direct or indirect contributions to training centres in order to create new classes or new trainings or significantly update existing trainings.
Our objective is to have 30,000 new people at the Base of the Pyramid trained in energy management.
Those two objectives are part of the Planet & Society Barometer which drives and measures the overall company progress in sustainable development since 2005 and is part of the wider company programme that sets the group strategic directions. This scorecard presents the three year sustainable development company objectives and reflects our continuously proactive commitment and our sustainable development stakes evolution. Access to energy for people at the BoP is still one of the group main stakes for the 2012-2014 period.
Over the last three years, almost 1.3 million people at the BoP already got access to energy thanks to BipBop offer. More than 12,000 young people were trained energy management, vs. an objective of 10,000 over three years. The objective has been multiplied by three for the next three years.
To develop its access to energy offer, the BipBop team works with governmental as well as non-governmental partners: for instance in Senegal, Schneider Electric has worked with the ANEV (Eco Villages National Agency) to provide about 1,000 people with access to electricity.
Another important partner is the Grameen Shakti company in Bangladesh: BipBop benefits from its strong local network and affordable microcredit purchase solutions. 200,000 households go access to lighting thanks to the In-Diya lamps.
BipBop also partners with Ecolabs, a mutual fund in Africa (Benin) that shares with BipBop its good network of contacts with governments and potential partners for electrification projects.
To develop its training programmes, BipBop partners with local and international NGOs, and sometimes with national ministries of education. For instance, Senai (National Industrial Training Service) is a main partner for training projects in Brazil where almost 5,000 people were trained since 2008.
BipBop partners with Don Bosco – Salesiens particularly in India where 3,200 people were trained, and with Aide & Actions for training centres in India and Haiti.
A dedicated team contributes to achieving the commitment to bring access to energy through an adapted offer: BipBop Managers and Salesmen in countries where the company operates and BipBop Business Development team at corporate level. There is also an offer creation team in Bangalore, India.
For the BipBop training programme, contributions can be (possibly cumulative): products and didactical equipments, knowledge transfer, training of trainers, cash. Schneider Electric does not supply the teachers or the premises and does not pay for operating costs. The BipBop training team includes three people and is located in Grenoble. The training projects are funding by the Schneider Electric Foundation to support local NGOs (about two million €).