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Project profile: Sanergy slum sanitation in Kenya

Sanergy, slum sanitation in Kenya

Sanergy aims to improve sanitation in urban slums in Kenya by designing user friendly systems to increase usage and reduce cleaning costs. The company is taking an innovative approach to increase access to sanitation and waste management practices.

Supported by
Innovations Against Poverty

Publication: Sanergy featured in Insider on creating consumer demand at the BoP
Editor's choice: Entrepreneurial models for safe water at the BoP
Interview with Sanergy
Sanergy Presentation at the IAP Conference and Awards 2012
Toilet teachings: 2 toilet ventures illustrate strategies for success in inclusive business
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“At each step, this model creates jobs and opportunity while simultaneously addressing the need for hygienic sanitation solutions amongst slum-dwellers. ”


Updates and developments will be added here as this project is implemented.




In Kenya’s slums, 8 million people lack access to adequate sanitation. Sanergy’s long term objective is to build and scale commercially and sustainably viable sanitation infrastructure in the slums of Nairobi.

Sanergy is taking an innovative systems-based approach to make hygienic sanitation accessible, affordable and sustainable by building out the entire sanitation chain. The business is a vertically integrated waste management system based on four parts.

•Build a network of low-cost sanitation centres in slums
•Distribute them through franchising to local entrepreneurs
•Collect the waste produced
•Process it into electricity and fertilizer

At each step, this model creates jobs and opportunity while simultaneously addressing the need for hygienic sanitation solutions amongst slum-dwellers.

Through field tests, Sanergy determined that the profitability of entrepreneurs who operate their toilets is directly and largely impacted by the user preference for the toilet design and the daily cleaning costs.  Off-the-shelf squat plates currently used do not meet the functional requirements of users. For example, current squat plates do not work well for women and often result in urine spilling outside the catchment or backsplash on the user.  IAP funding will support the product development of durable and hygienic toilet design elements.

To view other projects in the same country, sector or the same business model focus click the links in the table.
Country Kenya
Company Sanergy Inc.; a start-up based in the US and Nairobi
Commercial partners

PATH, African Population Health Research Centre, Falu – Microfinance bank, Kenya Ministry of Water, Kentainer, several local community service organizations and youth group

Sector Water, sanitation & waste management
Low income focus Consumers & clients; distributors
Business model focus
Revenue model
IAP contact

Ellen Carey:

Sanergy contact Ani Vallabhaneni, CEO:
Further information
Project Status Ongoing
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