Tunisian energy renewable energy startup Saphon Energy today signed a strategic alliance with Microsoft, which will see it receive financial resources, technology support and large scale visibility from the Redmond-based technology giant.
Saphon specialises in the research and development of wind energy and is responsible for creating a breakthrough and patented wind convertor, known as the Saphonian. This bladeless convertor is the first of its kind in Africa, and converts wind energy into green electricity, pumps water and helps spread connectivity.
Known as the ‘Saphonian’ or ‘Zero-blade Wind Converter’, the bladeless and rotation-less technology has won a number of international prizes, including: Best Idea at the Sustainable Entrepreneurship 2013 Awards and one of the Innovation Prizes for Africa in 2013.
“North Africa is an important region to us. We see tremendous potential for technology in the region to transform the lives of people, increase business aptitude and bring positive change across society,” says Samir Benmakhlouf, Managing Director of Microsoft Morocco. “Microsoft 4Afrika’s support of Saphon Energy is a perfect illustration of our commitment to promote new ideas born in Africa with the potential to change the world.”
Saphon Energy is also developing “Maraya” a solution that enables the collection and monitoring of data leveraging the benefits of Microsoft Azure Machine Learning services
“Personally, I’ve always been impressed by the impact of Microsoft in shaping the new global economy based on intelligence and authentic lateral thinking. Today, it is a real privilege for me and the whole team of Saphon Energy to join forces with Microsoft and connect their intelligence with ours. Support from companies like Microsoft is very important to help African tech companies transcend, scale and unleash their true innovative potential,” says Saphon founder Anis Aouini.
The alliance forms part of Microsoft’s 4Afrika initiative, which has a mandate to support African startups to innovate for the continent and the world.