Enabling off-grid households to order solar lights by sms, pay with mobile money and enjoy door-to-door delivery to escape energy poverty.

Derrick Hosea Opio

Derrick knows firsthand what it means not to have access to electricity. He was born in a low-income rural household in Uganda where the occasional source of light after dinner was from a kerosene lamp. As a child he nearly lost his life in a house fire caused by a kerosene lamp, while he was studying in pursuit of his dream to join law school. Driven by the belief that no children should have to go through the same experience to realize their dreams in the 21st century, he founded Onelamp.

Derrick took part in SE Forum’s SE Outreach Accelerator in 2016.



Onelamp tackles energy poverty in Uganda by providing a last mile on-demand delivery service for clean energy at the bottom of the pyramid. It enables off-grid households to order solar lights using their cell phones and enjoy door-to-door delivery using an existing transport infrastructure. Onelamp also does community marketing by working with local women’s saving and loan associations, through which they train women on the benefits of solar lights. To access Onelamp’s services, the customer dials a short code and is presented with a menu where they can choose to buy solar lights, get solar light assistance or give feedback on the product. They then choose the most suitable delivery method and provide their location. Onelamp instantly debits customers’ mobile money account and sends the solar lamp using a driver or taxi motorcycle from a regional customer service center. Upon confirmation of delivery, the rider or driver receives payment by mobile money. Onelamp is currently operating in three districts in Uganda. Derrick’s goal is for his business to reach all of Uganda and expand to neighboring countries. The SE Outreach Accelerator will provide him with the tools to start this process and take further steps towards realizing his mission of ending global energy poverty.