D.light Design, which offers affordable solar energy and lighting solutions, has raised a series-B round of $5.5 million, led by new investor Omidyar Network. This round of funding also saw participation from existing investors Acumen Fund, Nexus Venture Partners, Gray Matters Capital, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Garage Technology Ventures. The company raised $5.5 million in its first round of funding in 2008.
Jayant Sinha, Managing Director of Omidyar Network India, will join D.light’s Board of Directors.
D.light’s solar lanterns replace toxic kerosene lamps, providing life-changing improvements in personal health and security, as well as enhanced productivity and access to information. D.light will use the fresh round of funding for distribution throughout Africa and Asia as well as expand its product line beyond solar lighting.
D.light has also raised funding from $6-billion automobile-to-IT services conglomerate Mahindra & Mahindra group in its earlier rounds.
“We are thrilled to have Omidyar Network on board as an investor. We appreciate the perspective they bring—they understand how social enterprise can solve problems and improve lives in emerging economies,” said Sam Goldman, CEO of D.light. “Their investment will allow us to scale rapidly to reach millions of people around the world who lack access to electricity, offering them affordable products that meet vital daily needs.”
D.light has expanded distribution to over 30 countries and reached over 1.25 million people worldwide in its first three years of operations.
“Our investment enables D.light to scale its pursuit of customer-focused design with extreme affordability, a combination poised to unleash greater opportunity for millions,“ said Sinha.