Orange partners with Engie to convert main data center in Africa to solar power

Orange and Engie said they have teamed up to convert Groupement Orange Services (GOS), Orange’s primary data center in Africa, to solar power, helping to cut the carbon footprint in Cote d’Ivoire.   

As such, the GOS will provide the eighteen Orange Middle East and Africa (OMEA) subsidiaries with combined hosting and infrastructure operation services, platforms, and IT.   

The telco’s Tier III-certified GOS data center was built in 2016 in Grand Bassam, Côte d’Ivoire, on a site covering 16,600 sqm. It hosts IT and telecommunication equipment supporting services for all 18 of its African & Middle Eastern subsidiaries.  

“This project is a first in West Africa for Orange in terms of its size and scope, and it perfectly illustrates our ambition to speed up our solar projects to achieve net-zero carbon by 2040,” said Alioune Ndiaye, Chairman, and CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa.   

“In the rest of Africa and the Middle East, we have already implemented several initiatives, as equipping 5,400 telecoms sites by solar panels and building solar farms in Jordan and Mali,” he added.  

Also, the project includes Engie installing 784 photovoltaic cells and providing the data center with an estimated 527 MWh/year of renewable energy. This will cover close to 60 percent of the 1.3MW facility’s daytime consumption from 7 am till 6 pm.  

Orange signed, in December 2021, an EaaS (Energy as a Service) contract with Engie to convert the GOS to solar power by installing a solar plant on rooftops and solar carports for a total installed capacity of 355 kWp; the commissioning is scheduled for the second half of 2022.  

Armand Seya, CEO of ENGIE Services West Africa, added: “Engie Africa is active in electricity production, energy services, and decentralized solutions for off-grid customers across the continent. We are proud to support the GOS in its energy transition, having ensured the multi-technical maintenance of the data center since 2019 and now with the implementation of this solar plant.”