• Tue. Apr 23rd, 2024

Masiyiwa’s ADC inks 20-year solar energy deal with DPA

ByEconomic Times

Mar 21, 2023

By ETimes

Africa Data Centers (ADC), which is owned by Zimbabwean billionaire Strive Masiyiwa, recently signed a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement with Distributed Power Africa (DPA) to supply its facilities in South Africa with renewable solar energy.

The move comes in the midst of ongoing electricity shortages that have resulted in extended blackouts for many homes and businesses in South Africa, prompting President Cyril Ramaphosa to appoint the country’s first minister of electricity.

To overcome the challenges caused by the failing power grid, data center operators are forced to seek alternative energy sources, with renewable energy being the immediate solution — a path that Africa Data Centers has now chosen to take.

The new agreement between Africa Data Centers (ADC) and Distributed Power Africa (DPA) SA is set to usher in a new era of clean energy for ADC’s facilities in South Africa. Under the terms of the deal, DPA will supply 12 MW of renewable solar energy, partly from the solar farm the company is developing near Bloemfontein.

This agreement is a significant step towards ADC’s goal of achieving carbon neutrality, as it will provide over 30 percent of the company’s South African data centers with renewable energy. Furthermore, for Distributed Power Africa, the deal is an opportunity to showcase its innovative approach to deploying renewable energy solutions.

“Through this agreement, our customers will benefit from a sustainable data centre,” says Tesh Durvasula, CEO of Africa Data Centres, the largest network of interconnected data centre facilities in Africa. As the demand for data continues to soar, the data centre industry is expanding rapidly, he explains.

“While data centres are the foundation of the digital transformation process in Africa, they require reliable, cost-effective and preferably green power to operate. Our partnership with DPA helps in reducing our reliance on the strained South African national grid, enabling us to play our part in alleviating the current energy challenges facing the country”.

ADC is a leading carrier-neutral data center provider that is affiliated with Cassava Technologies, a group specializing in fiber and telecom solutions. Cassava Technologies was founded by Strive Masiyiwa, who is not only Zimbabwe’s wealthiest individual but also one of Africa’s leading tech billionaires.

Commenting on the partnership, Norman Moyo, CEO of DPA, said, “Our customers are looking for cost-effective and efficient ways of meeting their green targets and reduce energy costs for their businesses in a climate of increased power shortages. We are excited to embark on this milestone project with Africa Data Centres as it will demonstrate our innovation in deploying renewable energy solutions”.

Through the creation of a 50:50 Joint Venture between DPA and EDF in South Africa via DPA Southern Africa (Pty) Ltd, EDF intends to develop hybrid energy solutions for clients across Africa.

Valérie Levkov, Senior VP Africa and Middle East at EDF commented: “This agreement with Africa Data Centres re-affirms EDF’s commitment to provide low carbon solutions for commercial and industrial client in Africa, and we are very pleased to be a part of this initiative.”

ADC is not only Africa’s largest but also the most interconnected network of carrier- and cloud-neutral data center facilities. The company’s mission is to provide essential infrastructure to support organizations in achieving their digital goals.


Recently, ADC announced its plans to establish a new data center facility in Nairobi, demonstrating its commitment to meeting the increasing demand for data center services in the region.

By targeting Kenya as a strategic location, ADC aims to spearhead the country’s transition into the digital era and bolster its global reputation as an attractive destination for international cloud providers, hyperscalers, and other ICT companies.

By working together, the two companies are also supporting several of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. To ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all and to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. This partnership also creates sustainable consumption and production patterns and, most significantly, takes urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts – Harare

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