ACE solar cooking

South Asia
Last update

ACE is a solar energy company that produces and sells cookstoves equipped with a fan powered by a solar panel. The technology is designed to increase firewood and other organic fuel efficiency and substantially reduce smoke emissions. The ACE business model is also implemented in three African countries, where ACE has already sold 25,000 units.  

Inclusive Business Model

The innovative cooking stove equipment sells at $105 per piece. To ensure affordability, ACE provides a pay as you go system with an upfront payment of $25 and nine monthly fees of $10 to repay the cost of the stove. Payment is done through WING (a mobile banking provider) via a local agent or directly through a mobile phone. The product is sold mostly to low-income households (70%), in addition to poor and very poor (20%) and some better off households (10%).  

The company started operations in 2016. It has grown rapidly to sell 2,000 units in 2018 (up from 1,000 in 2017) and expects to market 15,000 units by 2023. The revenue will then be $1.5 million, up from $0.2 million in 2018. Profit margin is still low but is expected to reach 10 per cent by 2022.


ACE stoves are more expensive than traditional woodstoves. However, they are more energy efficient, safer to use, and healthier (smoke emission free). ACE stove saves about 37 per cent (50 per cent) in energy costs for cooking 
comparted to using wood (LPG gas). Moreover, the solar panel also provides solar lighting and phone charging which helps further reduce energy costs. 

The ACE cookstoves are imported from Lesotho, where they are manufactured by the parent company African Clean Energy. In the future, the company aims to produce the solar cookstove in Cambodia, for the domestic and the global market, creating jobs and developing skills in the country. It may employ about 300 persons by 2023 (from 20 persons in 2019).