Louis Coetzee, CEO of Kibo Energy. Picture: HETTY ZANTMAN
Louis Coetzee, CEO of Kibo Energy. Picture: HETTY ZANTMAN

Kibo Energy has narrowed its losses as it completes its transformation from a mining exploration company to a dedicated energy developer.

On Monday Kibo Energy reported a pre-tax loss of £4m (R73m) for the year to December from a loss of £4.5m (R82m), as its exploration spend more than halved.

The company is based in Ireland and listed on the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market, with a secondary listing on the JSE’s Alt-X.

Kibo, previously a minerals exploration and development company, has repositioned itself to benefit from sub-Saharan Africa’s need for sustainable and affordable electricity and in 2018 transformed itself into an energy developer and divested from its last remaining exploration project, Haneti Nickel.

While it already had the Mbeya coal-to-power project in Tanzania in its portfolio, in 2018 Kibo acquired majority interests in the Mabesekwa Coal independent power project (IPP) in Botswana, the Benga IPP in Mozambique, and a 60% equity interest in Mast Energy Developments in the UK where it will provide small-scale gas-fired generators to serve the UK reserve power market.

“Last year [2018] was transformational for the company as we reoriented our business and implemented our strategy to be a global energy developer,” Kibo chair, Christian Schaffalitzky, said in a statement. “This strategy has helped us to spread country and project risk and should present us with many opportunities within the strongly growing African energy sector.”

The company also announced on Monday that it had selected ESS Tech as its preferred electricity storage technology partner, in line with Kibo’s strategy to incorporate long-term renewable energy solutions into its coal power projects.

“The inclusion of renewable energy into power station designs allows for higher availability figures from a technical point of view and provides better fundability options,” said Kibo Energy CEO Louis Coetzee.  

“This opens new avenues for Kibo in terms of renewable co-generation with our coal power projects, an idea which is currently being developed for first application in the Benga Power Plant Project and ultimately provides us with a significant advantage over competitors,” he said.

steynl@businesslive.co.za