Bboxx Rwanda, a next generation utility company has launched a new sub-brand, “Bboxx Cook” that will provide clean cooking services across Rwanda. Bboxx Cook aims to enable Rwandan households and small businesses like restaurants to get Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) clean cooking systems without paying the full price up-front. The clean cooking products, now available and on sale at two Bboxx Cook locations in Kigali (Remera and Kicukiro), include gas cookers, cylinders and ongoing gas refills for customers who sign up.
With the pay-as-you-cook model, customers make a down payment that is a small fraction of the equipment cost, and the rest of the payments are spread out over a period of six months to one year. Every time a customer pays for a gas refill, a small amount goes towards the equipment they are already using.
“The launch of Bboxx Cook is a continuation of what we have been doing successfully for over twelve years in Rwanda. Our products whether solar home systems or clean cooking are developed to be affordable and sensitive to the environment and the health of our customers”. Justus Mucyo, Bboxx Rwanda Managing Director commented.
“We chose LPG because it is the most accessible, efficient and a cleaner energy alternative to charcoal and firewood.” John Kamali, Bboxx Rwanda’s Head of Projects, and Innovations commented.
In Rwanda today, 83.3% of the population uses biomass as a source of energy for cooking (charcoal and firewood) and cooking accounts for 14% of the greenhouse gas emissions from the country’s energy sector. High dependency on wood fuel is impacting the country’s forest cover. In line with this, the government is currently implementing a Biomass Energy Strategy that aims to reduce the number of households that use firewood to 42% by 2024, phase out the use of charcoal in urban areas and to achieve universal clean cooking access by 2030.
One of the key obstacles to adopting clean cooking is the high initial payment barrier. Whereas many customers can afford to buy gas every month, most customers cannot afford the initial cost of buying the equipment. LPG gas costs are competitive when compared to the cost of firewood and charcoal; both range between 12,000Frw and 20,000 Frw. However initial costs to start cooking with LPG in a home can range from 100,000 Frw and 200,000 Frw due to purchase of the gas cooker, the canister, and the gas. Bboxx Cook aims to enable customers to overcome this initial payment obstacle. As a next generation utility, Bboxx will continue to use its innovative Bboxx Pulse®, an Internet of Things (IoT) technology to accelerate access to vital utilities for all Rwandans. Using Pulse, Bboxx can remotely deliver, monitor, and manage essential products and services in a scalable and trackable manner.