GIZ has undertaken a range of projects, which aim to facilitate knowledge transfer between Germany and South Africa. While Germany is a developed country, which, in many substantive ways, is different ways, there are important points of connection. First, German municipalities play a very active role in electricity systems. Second, Germany has applied a social ownership approach to renewable energy investment that many South African actors see as imperative in this context. This paper provides an overview of German municipalities’ responses to energy system restructuring, market reform, and increased small-scale embedded energy (SSEG). This research forms part of bilateral dialogues between the two countries on municipal business model approaches.