Chinese firm Shenzhen Star Instruments Company has won a Sh746.2 million tender to supply single phase prepayment meters to KPLC.
The scandal-filled and cash-strapped firm expects to add more customers through the return of its Last Mile Connectivity Project (LMCP) that links homes to the national grid under a subsidised programme.
The award comes barely two weeks after inviting bids for supply of nearly 200,000 post-paid meters, signalling that it favours a mix of prepaid and post-paid meters. The earlier plan was to completely switch to prepaid meters to reduce mounting customer debt.
Shenzhen Star had in 2017 bid for another tender worth Sh1.25 billion to design, supply and install an advanced metering system to Kenyan Power but lost to rival Chinese firm ZTE Corporation.
According to documents available for perusal, the directors of Shenzhen Star are listed as Ronald Kingeru Kaburia, Netfast Communications Ltd and Vigelo and Gelo Construction Ltd.
Kenya Power’s LMCP was launched in 2015 to scale up connectivity in rural and peri-urban areas by providing subsidy for grid extension to enable customers get electricity supply at affordable cost.