Business Development Manager Employment Opportunity – UpEnergy

Job Title:    Business Development Manager

Organisation: UpEnergy

Duty Station:  Kampala, Uganda


About US:

UpEnergy ( brings aspirational products that save energy and improve health within reach of low-income customers. We develop distribution channels that sell efficient and clean energy technologies, primarily efficient cookstoves and finance our growth through bespoke projects that generate carbon emissions reductions that we market and sell to global partners.


We sell products under our SmartHome brand and through partnerships with other brands. We operate regional distribution hubs and build relationships with retailers, and directly with customers, through the SmartHome sales operation. We’ve seen 100% year on year growth for two straight years and reached over 250,000 new African households last year with products that save each family we reach about 9% of their annual income while reducing air pollution.

UpEnergy has a 10-year track record of building projects that outperform expectations on the generation of emissions reductions, and that deliver on our energy savings promise to LMIC customers. We are one of the largest compliance credit project developers focused on projects that alleviate poverty with a team that has a collective 50 years of experience in climate finance and is at the forefront of Paris-era project finance.

About the role:


Job Summary:  UpEnergy is at a time of exciting growth, expanding both in terms of product and geographic portfolio, and seeks Business Development Manager to help lead our growing country operations across the African continent. The Manager will work hand in hand with the Director of Business Development as well as the UpEnergy leadership team to scope out potential markets for development, engage in pre-launch activities such as determining local manufacturing capacity, on the ground sales and distribution assessments and establishing the business in a particular geography.


In more advanced markets, the Manager may work on helping to establish and grow country operations in the first year or two of operations. This would involve assisting the leadership team to build a strong country team, build viable sales and distribution channels and ensure quality in all aspects of the business – from manufacturing to data collection and verification.

The UpEnergy Business Development Manager is a rolling position that will provide the opportunity to be based in a host of new UpEnergy markets. If you are eager to spend at least 1 year on the ground gaining incredible experience while being part of one of the fastest growing start-ups in Africa and believe you’re up for the challenge (as well as a lot of fun!), we’d love to hear from you!


Why Join Us?

Not your average 9-to-5

  • UpEnergy encourages teamwork, creativity, and we’re not afraid to get our hands dirty. We stay close to our market, understand our customers, and have a lot of fun while doing our work! If you’re looking for a conventional 9-to-5, you’d be missing out on our adventures!

Personal and Career Growth

  • Wouldn’t it be a pity to spend so much time working but not growing and learning? At UpEnergy we value both personal and professional growth, and we want to grow as a team. From classroom training to coffee chats to performance review, we want to support every team member to grow into the best version they can.

Opportunity to do things in a new way

  • As one of the largest compliance credit issuers in Africa, we need to be constantly improving and rethinking our way of work. This means endless opportunities for a self-starter to initiate new ways of doing things or experimenting ways to help us improve.

Create Lasting Impact

  • Our clean energy products bring positive impact to both our planet earth and to the low-income communities we work in.
  • We don’t just focus on sales – we follow up and truly understand our customers to make sure that they continue to benefit from our products. Your work will create much
  • longer-lasting impact than what you can see!


Key Duties and Responsibilities:  

New market Expansion

  • Work with Director of Business Development to support efforts of expanding UpEnergy’s operations into new markets.
  • Establish key partnerships on the ground in the areas of manufacturing, service providers, sales and distribution, technical carbon verification, as well as with governments and NGOs.
  • Work with global leadership team to adapt UpEnergy’s business model to the local context of new markets and provide strategic leadership in-country
  • Assist in setting goals and targets for various stages of development within an expansion market
  • Coordinate efforts on the ground for pre-launch and launch of new market. This may include setting up initial operations, assisting hiring a capable team and working with partners, as well as ensuring the continued support to new country teams to anticipate and avoid bottlenecks, ensuring smooth continuation of operations
  • Formalize relationships with various partners by negotiating and signing commercial agreements
  • Work with legal service providers to incorporate new local entities Growth Management
  • Help design (and manage) the UpEnergy Expansion Playbook, and facilitate knowledge transfer across various country functional teams
  • Support rapid growth of the company by establishing policies and procedures to be harmonized across markets
  • Ensure UpEnergy’s tech stack can support the company’s fast growth, covering software solutions to be used in the field, CRM solutions, internal file management systems, etc.
  • Play a key role in managing UpEnergy’s “systemic debt” as a result of growth, anticipate and solve potential blind spots
  • Develop communication materials to keep the industry, stakeholders, and website up to date on UpEnergy’s expansion progress
  • Keep any eye on grant opportunities that may arise and take lead in submitting funding applications to relevant programs

Qualifications, Skills and Experience:

  • Previous business development, market expansion and/or commercial experience
  • Ability to work independently, a self-starter who is excited to work in frontier markets
  • Excitement to help a high impact start-up launch operations in a new market
  • MS Excel skills
  • High work ethic
  • Excellent communication skills and interpersonal skills
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Willingness to travel to UpEnergy’s expansion markets


Nice to Have

  • Understanding or experience working in social impact start-ups
  • Understanding of customers and business culture in Sub-Saharan Africa


How to Apply:

All candidates should send their applications and updated CVs to:


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