Jump menu

Main content |  back to top

News and Media Releases

Shell and Akon unveil Africa’s first player & solar powered football pitch in Lagos

Global music star Akon joined Shell to shine a light on the power of innovative options for access to smarter energy by unveiling Africa’s first human and solar powered football pitch at the Federal College of Education, Akoka, Lagos. The new pitch is the latest initiative from Shell’s #makethefuture programme, which puts bright energy ideas into action to bring benefits to local communities around the world.
Akon with Footbal players

Shell and Akon unveil Africa’s first player and solar powered football pitch in Lagos.

  • Pitch to inspire entrepreneurs and bright energy ideas that open up access to energy in Africa and beyond
  • Akon and Hardwork debut new song on pitch that will feature in music video celebrating potential of renewable energy

The football pitch was refurbished by Shell using more than 90 underground tiles that capture kinetic energy created by the movement of the players. The tiles are the invention of a young British entrepreneur and founder of Pavegen, Laurence Kemball-Cook, who has been supported through Shell LiveWIRE. The kinetic energy is then stored and combined with power generated by solar panels to operate the new floodlights. This bright energy idea allows the students to play at night and provides a safer and more secure space at the heart of the community. 

Music superstar and solar entrepreneur Akon joined Shell to officially open the pitch and continue his commitment to teaching young Africans the importance of harnessing the power of Africa’s renewable energy. The singer is spearheading, through Akon Lighting Africa, a large scale effort to develop solar-powered solutions that will provide African communities with access to clean and affordable sources of electricity. As part of the celebration at the Federal College of Education, Akon and DJ artist Philip “Hardwork” Constable debuted their new song “Tell Me We’re OK” in an exclusive performance on the pitch before its release in 2016. The innovative football pitch will feature in the upcoming music video.

Osagie Okunbor, Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria & Managing Director of The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC) said, “Shell makes a significant contribution to energy solutions for Nigeria, and we are committed to supporting the Nigerian economy and its people. We need bright energy ideas. Some of these will come from Shell but naturally, others will come from outside our business. So it’s crucial that Shell supports energy entrepreneurs, and we hope that this pitch will inspire more entrepreneurs and young people to help us make a smarter energy future.”

Akon commented, “New, reliable and smarter energy solutions play a major role in driving human progress in Africa. Projects like this innovative football pitch draw attention to the major opportunity that Nigeria as well as the whole of Africa have if we look to better harness new technologies and the continent’s abundant renewable energy resources. That is why Hardwork and I will feature this pitch in our upcoming video for “Tell Me We’re OK” because I want young people, whether they are in Lagos, Los Angeles or London to think about how they too can help us make the future.”

Shell LiveWIRE is an international programme that has been a catalyst for young entrepreneurs to develop enterprising ideas into viable and sustainable businesses for more than 30 years. The LiveWIRE programme was launched in Nigeria in 2003, and since then it has trained more than 6,000 youths in enterprise development and management, of whom more than 3,000 have been provided with business start-up assistance. 

Laurence Kemball-Cook, Pavegen founder and CEO and Shell LiveWIRE UK Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist in 2011, said, “Our work with Shell has been pivotal to Pavegen’s growth. We got involved with Shell LiveWIRE and Shell Springboard, and both programmes have really helped us transition from a start-up to a small company with a 25-strong staff and global IP. I’m grateful for all the support Shell has given us, and hope we can continue to grow in the smart city future.”

Siji O. Olusanya, Provost of the Federal College of Education, Akoka, added, “We have more than 10,000 student teachers, who will benefit from this innovative solution to light our football pitch. They will be the next generation of teachers across Nigeria and can they use their first-hand experience of this pitch to inspire their pupils that they too can work towards developing bright energy ideas that could make a real difference to their community, Nigeria or even the world. Not only our students but the community that surrounds us will all get to benefit from this pitch for years to come.” 

To find out more about how Shell supports bright energy ideas, search #makethefuture on Google.

Media Enquiries

Precious Okolobo, Media Relations Manager

Email: Precious.Okolobo@shell.com

Phone: (+23) 48070365019

Cautionary statement

The companies in which Royal Dutch Shell plc directly and indirectly owns investments are separate entities. In this press release "Shell", "Shell group" and "Royal Dutch Shell" are sometimes used for convenience where references are made to Royal Dutch Shell plc and its subsidiaries in general. Likewise, the words "we", "us" and "our" are also used to refer to subsidiaries in general or to those who work for them. These expressions are also used where no useful purpose is served by identifying the particular company or companies. ''Subsidiaries'', "Shell subsidiaries" and "Shell companies" as used in this press release refer to companies over which Royal Dutch Shell plc either directly or indirectly has control. Companies over which Shell has joint control are generally referred to "joint ventures" and companies over which Shell has significant influence but neither control nor joint control are referred to as "associates". In this press release, joint ventures and associates may also be referred to as "equity-accounted investments". The term "Shell interest" is used for convenience to indicate the direct and/or indirect ownership interest held by Shell in a venture, partnership or company, after exclusion of all third-party interest.

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning the financial condition, results of operations and businesses of Royal Dutch Shell. All statements other than statements of historical fact are, or may be deemed to be, forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements of future expectations that are based on management's current expectations and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied in these statements. Forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements concerning the potential exposure of Royal Dutch Shell to market risks and statements expressing management's expectations, beliefs, estimates, forecasts, projections and assumptions. These forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as ''anticipate'', ''believe'', ''could'', ''estimate'', ''expect'', ''goals'', ''intend'', ''may'', ''objectives'', ''outlook'', ''plan'', ''probably'', ''project'', ''risks'', "schedule", ''seek'', ''should'', ''target'', ''will'' and similar terms and phrases. There are a number of factors that could affect the future operations of Royal Dutch Shell and could cause those results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements included in this press release including (without limitation): (a) price fluctuations in crude oil and natural gas; (b) changes in demand for Shell's products; (c) currency fluctuations; (d) drilling and production results; (e) reserves estimates; (f) loss of market share and industry competition; (g) environmental and physical risks; (h) risks associated with the identification of suitable potential acquisition properties and targets, and successful negotiation and completion of such transactions; (i) the risk of doing business in developing countries and countries subject to international sanctions; (j) legislative, fiscal and regulatory developments including regulatory measures addressing climate change; (k) economic and financial market conditions in various countries and regions; (l) political risks, including the risks of expropriation and renegotiation of the terms of contracts with governmental entities, delays or advancements in the approval of projects and delays in the reimbursement for shared costs; and (m) changes in trading conditions. All forward-looking statements contained in this press release are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements contained or referred to in this section. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Additional risk factors that may affect future results are contained in Royal Dutch Shell's 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2014 (available at www.shell.com/investor and www.sec.gov). These risk factors also expressly qualify all forward looking statements contained in this press release and should be considered by the reader. Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of this press release, December 10, 2015. Neither Royal Dutch Shell plc nor any of its subsidiaries undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or other information. In light of these risks, results could differ materially from those stated, implied or inferred from the forward-looking statements contained in this press release.

We may have used certain terms, such as resources, in this press release that United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) strictly prohibits us from including in our filings with the SEC. U.S. Investors are urged to consider closely the disclosure in our Form 20-F, File No 1-32575, available on the SEC website www.sec.gov.

Page Tools