Husk Power Systems: Lighting up the Indian Rural Lives

Case Abstract

Even in 2012, lack of electricity is a major issue in the Indian hinterlands. Many remote villages were not electrified and even those that were, have power supply for just a few hours in a month. This problem was acute in the state of Bihar in North India. Gyanesh Pandey, who grew up in Bihar experiencing the shortage of electricity, came up with a unique model to generate and distribute power to the poor who lived in the remote parts of India by using an indigenously developed modified gasifier system that runs on rice husk. The enterprise, Husk Power Systems (HPS), won many awards for its innovative business plan, social entrepreneurship, and for producing clean energy.

This unique and sustainable venture, made positive impact on the society, by improving the lives of individuals, by providing them continuous power supply at comparatively low prices. It had a positive impact on the environment too. Despite low pricing, HPS achieved a healthy profit margin which not only helped it to sustain itself but also helped it to replicate the model to grow rapidly. By mid-2011, HPS had impacted the lives of 200,000 people living in more than 325 villages and hamlets by installing more than 80 power plants. HPS planned to expand its reach to 6,500 villages by increasing the number of plants to 2014 by the year 2014. This would not only create 7,000 local jobs but would also help reduce CO2 emissions by 750,000 tons and US$ 50 million in cash for more than 5 million people.

Authors: Manish Agarwal, D. Satish
Institution: IBS, Hyderabad, India
Competition Year2013
Place2nd place
TrackSocial Entrepreneurship
Key WordsElectricity, India, Problem, Sustainable Energy, Non-Conventional System, Gasifier System, HPS University, Electricity Generation, Electricity Distribution, Business Model, Husk Power System, Kerosene, Employment, Ashden Award
CoursesBusiness Ethics, Rural Marketing, Social Entrepreneurship
Target AudienceMBA, MS
Permission RightsPlease contact Manish Agarwal for permission rights
DownloadInspection Copy
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oikos International

posted June 30, 2013

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