Ten Moroccan startups awarded for their water conservation projects

In initiatives focused on the Marrakech-Safi region

PHOTO/TWITTER via @EFIAQUA  -   Networking space at the Digitalisation and Decarbonisation of Water fair, Efiaqua 2022, held in Valencia from 4 to 6 October 2022

Participants in the 1st edition of the Hackathon Water Show enjoyed this flagship event dedicated to putting innovation at the service of the conservation and improvement of water resources, the coaching phase and Workshops. During this Hackathon spread over three days, some 20 entrepreneurs and startups competed for the first 10 places to participate in the Boot Camp, and thus benefit from a 3-month incubation programme provided by Emerging Business Factory (EBF).

The Marrakech-Safi Regional Investment Centre, Emerging Business Factory and Near East Foundation announced the results of the first edition of the Water Show Hackathon on innovation in the water sector in response to water stress in Morocco. The 10 winning startups received a grant of 500,000 Moroccan dirhams, about 46,500 euros, received coaching assistance and participated in several workshops organised on this occasion and reviewed by an audience of experts who accompanied them for 36 hours, in terms of the elaboration of their proposals and the promotion of technical aspects in particular, the business plan, the economic offers, etc.

PHOTO/EFIAQUA/RAMÓN SABATER - Hackathon held by Efiaqua in search of solutions to improve the efficient management of water, promoting sustainability and focusing on digitalisation, decarbonisation of the service and carbon neutrality, within the framework of the Digitalisation and Decarbonisation of Water fair, Efiaqua 2022

The winners of the 2022 edition of the Hackathon Water Show were announced on 14 October 2022. According to Emerging Business Factory, one of the founders of the annual competition, the current water deficit in this region of the Kingdom is around 564 million cubic metres per year, which leads to an oscillation between supply and demand. Emerging Business Factory supports this initiative with the Marrakech-Safi Regional Investment Centre and the Near East Foundation.

Speaking to M24, MAP's continuous news TV channel, Mr. Toufiq Aboudia, co-founder of the incubator Emerging Business Factory (EBF), indicated that this initiative has aroused great enthusiasm among different partners, highlighting the inclusive approach of this hackathon, which called on all actors and stakeholders of entrepreneurship, highlighted the enthusiasm and willingness of participants, as well as coaches and partners, for the realisation of innovative projects and solutions related to water.

At the microphone of M24, Samia El Ouali, candidate and laureate of the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Marrakech, expressed her joy at participating in this Hackathon and being able to exchange with the other participants among the bearers of innovative projects and solutions related to the problem of the scarcity of water resources, making it known that her project is based on an industrial benefit with a high water filtration capacity.

PHOTO/ABENGOA - Archive image. Desalination plant

In response to the water shortage, Watchech has perfected an eco-biofilter for the treatment of domestic wastewater and greywater. Meanwhile, the start-up Phycotech proposes a technique called "Phycoremediation" based on the use of microalgae as a means of water purification to improve the quality of pre-treated water for irrigation.

In the Marrakech-Safi region, the agricultural sector consumes more than 80% of the available water resources. SGW's solution is "Shrimp Green Water", an industrial product used for water filtration. In the Cherifian Kingdom, the government is also focusing on seawater desalination to mitigate the effects of water stress, thanks to industrial complexes such as the one built in the Dakhla region.