About Sun Exchange


At Sun Exchange, our mission is simple — to connect the world to the sun.

We believe sunshine is one of humanity’s most valuable, yet underutilised, resources. Not only can solar energy sustainably power hospitals, schools, community organisations, businesses and factories, it can also drive entire industries and economies. Solar dramatically reduces carbon emissions and air pollution, and it’s also quickly becoming the most affordable source of electricity. However, financial obstacles continue to hinder solar adoption, especially in emerging markets.

Enter Sun Exchange, the world’s first peer-to-peer solar leasing platform. Through Sun Exchange, anyone, anywhere in the world, can own solar energy-producing cells and build wealth by leasing those cells to power businesses and organisations in emerging markets, with installations and maintenance taken care of by one of Sun Exchange’s carefully selected installation partners. We leverage financial innovation and the power of the crowd to drive sustainable energy development and make the environmental, social and economic benefits of solar accessible and affordable for all.

Founder’s Story

Abe Cambridge has an academic background in climate change science. Through his studies, it became alarmingly clear that climate change presents the most imminent threat to humanity. His studies led him to the conclusion that the solution is to transition the world away from fossil fuels and towards solar power, the most deployable, affordable and accessible type of renewable energy.

After six years of building and running a solar panel installation company in the UK, Abe moved to South Africa in 2014 to work as a solar engineering consultant. He was immediately struck by the absence of solar panels on rooftops, despite Southern Africa being one of the sunniest regions on Earth. As he researched and learned more about the challenges of South Africa’s solar industry, he realised the lack of appropriate finance products for businesses and organisations to go solar was the most common roadblock to solar deployment.

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And crucially, unlike his home country of the UK, in a sunny country like South Africa, solar panels are so effective that subsidies are not required to provide a double digit return on investment. At the same time, Abe learned how to use cryptocurrency to send money back home to the UK and soon discovered that the technology made moving money around the world incredibly fast, easily and inexpensive.

It was this realisation that sparked the idea for Sun Exchange - universal peer-to-peer solar cell leasing. After nearly two years of developing Sun Exchange in his spare time, in November 2015, Abe quit his day job and set off on a mission to close the solar funding gap by connecting the world to the sun.

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Abe Cambridge has an academic background in climate change science. Through his studies, it became alarmingly clear that climate change presents the most imminent threat to humanity. His studies led him to the conclusion that the solution is to transition the world away from fossil fuels and towards solar power, the most deployable, affordable and accessible type of renewable energy.

After six years of building and running a solar panel installation company in the UK, Abe moved to South Africa in 2014 to work as a solar engineering consultant. He was immediately struck by the absence of solar panels on rooftops, despite Southern Africa being one of the sunniest regions on Earth. As he researched and learned more about the challenges of South Africa’s solar industry, he realised the lack of appropriate finance products for businesses and organisations to go solar was the most common roadblock to solar deployment.

Read Less

And crucially, unlike his home country of the UK, in a sunny country like South Africa, solar panels are so effective that subsidies are not required to provide a double digit return on investment. At the same time, Abe learned how to use cryptocurrency to send money back home to the UK and soon discovered that the technology made moving money around the world incredibly fast, easily and inexpensive.

It was this realisation that sparked the idea for Sun Exchange - universal peer-to-peer solar cell leasing. After nearly two years of developing Sun Exchange in his spare time, in November 2015, Abe quit his day job and set off on a mission to close the solar funding gap by connecting the world to the sun.

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Team


Abraham Cambridge

Chief Executive Officer and Board Member

Lisa Lyhne

Chief Operating Officer and Board Member

Saul Wainwright

Chief Financial Officer

Kath Sharfman

Chief Platform Officer

Andre De Klerk

Solar Engineer

Aneme Dlamini

Customer Success Specialist

Avashen Padayachee

Quality Engineer

Anthony Stonefield

Strategic Business Developer

Al Luke

Creative Director

Banele Mthabela

Software Engineer

Barrett Jakeman

Customer Champion

Ben Vink

Senior Growth Marketer

Caroline Skinner

Head of Communications

Daniel Cabral

Software Engineer

David Coomber

Tech Team Manager

Dermott Murphy

Head of Solar Engineering

Jeff Chien

Software Engineer

Josh Pama

Business Development Executive

Louis Serfontein

Head of Business Development

Mischa Blecher

Business Development Executive

Michelle Riley

Designer & Software Engineer

Mike Pearce

Business Development Executive

Nelisiwe Nduli

Quality Engineer

Penny Van Zyl

Engineering Support

Retha Meyer

Finance Director

Rail da Ribeira

Senior Software Engineer

Rowan Jacklin

Business Development Executive

Roxanne Douglas

Energy Analyst

Salome Bronkhorst

Public Relations

Simoa Nangle

Marketing Coordinator

Stephan Van der Walt

Legal & Compliance Officer

Shamika Sookoo

Business Development Executive

Theseus Gandanzara

Financial Accountant

Susan Coomber

Customer Support

Yadhir Maharaj

Software Engineer

Board Members/Advisors


Abraham Cambridge

Board Member

Jeffrey Frank

Board Member

Lisa Lyhne

Board Member

Zahid Ahmed Hassen

Board Member

William Barry

Board Member

Team


Milestones

2014 - Present

June 2015:

Sun Exchange is born with initial funding from a grassroots crowdfunding campaign.

March 2016:

First solar project crowdsale launched for Stellenbosch Waldorf School (South Africa’s first crowd-sourced solar plant)

February 2017:

Second solar project completed, 1,500+ registered members

August 2017:

Graduated from Techstars Accelerator. Completed third solar project.

September 2018:

Seventh solar project completed. 6,000+ registered members on the Sun Exchange platform.

February 2019:

Named as one of the world’s Most Innovative Companies by FastCompany.

May 2019:

More than 500 MWh of solar power generated across all projects; tenth solar project completed.

June 2019:

1 MW of solar cells sold; 7,000 members registered on the Sun Exchange platform

June 2020:

Closed $4M Series A funding round.

November 2020:

Expansion into Sub-Saharan Africa with launch of solar project crowdsale for Nhimbe Fresh in Zimbabwe.

March 2021:

$1.4M Nhimbe Fresh crowdsale completion marks largest crowdsourced project in Africa.

Today:

40+ solar project crowdsales complete. Members across 180 countries. Over 1 million solar cells sold, totalling 5.2 GWh of clean energy.