"Bondo is a scattered cluster of villages in a remote region of Malawi near the border with Mozambique. Unlike in most places in this impoverished country, when night descends they can now switch on lights, stoves and televisions in their homes."
"The big surprise in Bondo is not simply the supply of energy to such an isolated community, in a country where only one in eight citizens has access to grid electricity and on a continent where almost half the 1.2 billion population still lack this life-changing supply."
"The real eye-opener is the stack of 32 computers inside the concrete pump shed. This innovative mini-grid — located more than two hours from Malawi’s second city of Blantyre along bumpy roads and tracks that can become impassable in a torrential downpour — is mining Bitcoin to fund its operation."
"Mining soaks up the excess energy of these renewable plants. And this delivers not just electricity but a powerful jolt to to drive development in the local economy."
"Malawi, one of the world’s poorest nations, provides a powerful case study in the failures of aid. As former development minister Rory Stewart said in a lecture at Yale, Britain gave £4.5billion over half a century to this southern African country corroded by corruption and bad governance, yet it ended up “if anything, poorer than it was when we started”."
“Bitcoin can prevent Bondo becoming the sort of white elephant that you see across Africa, built by aid groups and then abandoned. They come in with low-cost loans and grants to finance all these schemes that they say will pay their way in 30 years but the sums never add up. This is a new way to finance development,” said Erik Hersman, chief executive of Gridless.
"Malawi also demonstrates another reason why there is rising interest in Bitcoin in Africa: people are seeking a safer home for their cash than local currencies."