Best Ideas 2019 features all the nominated entries submitted under ‘Submit your Idea’ category. All the entries consist of innovative solutions or propositions for an enterprise that champions the Sustainable Development Goals. They can be on the conceptual, planning, or start-up stage.
Explain your idea in details:
Vironet targets clean energy generation from biowastes using anaerobic digesters integrated with Information Technology to ensure efficiency, timeliness and appropriate control of operations. We see this concept as a great opportunity upon realizing that only 5% of Nigerian households have adopted LPG for cooking while 56% and 27% use firewood and kerosene respectively. However, research reveals that 90% of these non-gas users are willing to switch but cited price as the major barrier. Unlike LPG, biogas is cheap and waste dependent, which means steady production at a zero cost of raw material. Moreover, current estimate reveals that Sub-Sahara Africa generates approximately 62 million tons of waste annually, which are environmentally undesirable. This well leverage on to generate not just cheap but sustainable energy source. Our product offerings include BIO-METHANE, compressed into cylinders of varying kilograms for households and industrial consumption. Also, ORGANIC FERTILIZER (digestate), well packaged for farmers. As we grow, portion of the biogas will be used to generate ELECTRICITY. We also aimed at providing consultancy services on integrated energy, while educating the populace, especially the rural communities on the importance of resorting to renewables. During the early stage of operations, the plant will be sited to receive feedstocks from the rising population of slums in Nigeria. Farms, markets and abattoirs will be of great interest while collaborating with municipal waste collectors and sewer evacuators. Moreover, 25% (second globally) of Nigerias population currently practice open defecation due to inadequate toilet facility, which results in poor sanitation and consequent environmental pollution. Coincidentally, human excreta is one of our raw materials, so, as part of our expansion plans, we will strategically install public toilets at different locations using geospatial information to help reduce effect of open defecation while at the same time generate raw material for our operations.
Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development
The main purpose of this initiative is to capitalize on the opportunity of providing clean, cheap and sustainable energy to our customers, recognizing the fact that biogas technology has been identified as a sector capable of providing multiple solutions to numerous challenges related to the UNDP-SDGs. So, the overall impact of this business in terms of economic, social and environmental conservation is quite beneficial. Aside generating fund for the company and corresponding raise in the countrys GDP through taxes and revenues, the business represents a sustainable practice, which offers the society numerous benefits corresponding to food security, sanitation, health, zero waste, Climate action (reduce the impact of greenhouse effect by over 20 times), clean and affordable energy thus the recognition by the WBA as the leading solution to challenges of the SDGs. Currently, 25% (second globally) of Nigerias population are practicing open defecation due to inadequate toilet facility, resulting in poor sanitation and consequent environmental pollution. Coincidentally, human excreta is one of our raw materials, so, Vironet will strategically install public toilets at different locations using geospatial information to help reduce effect of open defecation while at the same time generate raw material for our operations. The business will absolve massive number of people in the host communities in the production, waste collection, packaging and supply of our products thus providing hundreds of formal and informal jobs for the unemployed youths in Nigeria and Africa by extension while generating electricity for the host communities that are not electrified. Therefore, by actualizing this concept, Vironet is aimed at bringing the solutions for reducing high dependency on fossil fuels, with positive contributions to the economy, as we make environment friendly products and much beneficial outputs from waste. So, we are establishing a business which isnt just socially acceptable but quite profitable.
Plans for implementation and sustainability
REVENUE MODEL We are aware that the overall impact of this business in terms of social and environmental conservation is highly beneficial. However, we are in the business essentially to make money, and will therefore, generate revenue through the following: I. Sales of the compressed bio-methane to residential households (both urban and rural), hotels, boarding schools, university hostels and industries. II. Sales of organic fertilizer (the digestate from the biogas manufacturing process) to farmers. III. Sales and maintenance of cylinders. IV. From Consultation/Advisory fees. V. Also, as we expand, revenue will also be generated from the pre-paid metered off-grid biogas system. SOURCES OF CAPITAL This business will be financed as follows: 4. Self-funding 5. Funding from folks (family and friends) 6. External funding by the potential investors. MARKETING OBJECTIVES To create value and satisfaction for the customers, To create strong distribution channel, To achieve better market share, To increase growth rate and To provide high quality products and associated. MARKETING STRATEGY Vironet will adopt the following marketing strategies: I. Create awareness in local and major markets through established distributors. II. Vironet will supply her products to homes, heating industries and farmers. III. Collaborate with relevant institutions and industries; hotels, restaurants, schools and companies that rely on our products for their raw materials. IV. Promote and attend relevant events (agriculture, food and sustainable development seminars and business fairs). V. Promote and attend relevant events (waste and energy related, especially renewable energy seminars and business fairs). VI. Trade online via our website, emails, e-commerce websites (Jumia, V-connect, among others) while promoting the products on social networks and blogs. VII. Adopt flexible payment options and offer home delivery to customers on request. VIII. Well issue loyalty cards and referrals discounts to our faithful customers.
Okonkwo, Kingsley Chukwuemeka is a 25-year-old son of Chief Linus Okonkwo of Orba, Enugu state, Nigeria. Kingsley holds a bachelors degree in Environmental Technology from the Federal University of Technology Owerri, Imo State, Nigeria. He is very passionate about environmental sustainability, renewable energy and entrepreneurship, and currently undergoing an online course on New Energy Technologies with the Grenoble Ecole de Management, France. Hes got several notable achievements in his career, however the most notable one was being selected to represent FUTO and Nigeria at the Hultprize business competition in Dubai in march 2016, with the case study of developing a business plan that will double the income of 10 Million people living in slums in 5 years. He successfully led the team of three to reach the regional finals of this competition. Also, late 2018, he led Team Vironet to participate in the THE PITCH NIGERIA by Sterling Bank and gained access to a three-week online training on SME toolkits, which exposed the team to essential business skills such as marketing management, financial management, operations management, human resources management and most importantly development of business plan to achieve optimum results and cost effectiveness, especially with limited resources. Having participated in the few business idea competitions, interned and worked with organizations such as the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) Nigeria, Ruby Power, among others, Kingsley gained extensive experience and competence in agriculture, waste management and green technology. Kingsley, the CEO and co-founder of the Vironet Energy, resorted to entrepreneurship as the best way to accomplish his twin goal of becoming a part of the campaign against adverse climate change and the desire to put an end to the rising energy crises in Africa through provision of clean, convenient, affordable and sustainable energy as one of the drivers of Africas economic growth.