VIDA is a product from TFE Energy. TFE is dedicated to achieving universal energy access and to improving investments into remote infrastructure and markets. Our team consists of data technology engineers on one side and village economy experts on the other. This breadth allows us to continuously test and validate new data technologies in the field and work towards specific solutions – such as Village Data Analytics. TFE has offices in Germany and South Africa.


Adrian Lotter

Ecosystems and finance

Adrian is based in South Africa. He applies his finance and engineering know-how to projects that include climate change and ecosystem solutions.

Adrian Rumpold

Senior software engineer

Adrian is a senior software engineer at appliedAI. He holds a Master’s degree in Software Engineering from TU Munich, LMU Munich, and University of Augsburg.

Andre Troost

Energy access engineering

Andre is a South Africa based energy access expert. He works on least-cost electrification projects across Africa.

Bruno Sanchez Andrade-Nuño


Bruno is Principal Scientist at Microsoft “AI for Earth”. Earlier, he has worked at the president’s office at the World Bank and was Chief Scientist at Mapbox. Bruno is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum and holds a PhD in Astrophysics.

Dr. Donald Leonhard-MacDonald

Director of AI engineering

Donald is the director of AI engineering at appliedAI. He has a PhD in machine learning. For the last 16 years he has been developing AI applications ranging from high-content screening to media monitoring and BI/robotic process automation.

Frederik Heetmeyer

Junior AI engineer

Frederik is junior AI engineer at appliedAI. He currently studies Engineering Science at TU Munich.

Heidi Schiller


Heidi is an expert in rural development. Over the last 12 years, she developed and implemented solar projects for productive use in Western Africa. She advises on business models for SMEs and operations of mini-grids.

Hlengiwe Radebe

Energy for productive uses and energy and development

Hlengiwe works on modeling productive use opportunities around energy solutions for low-income households in Sub Saharan Africa. She has a particular interest in linking energy access to climate resilience and gender-balancing.

Nabin Gaihre

New business and socio-economic modeling

Nabin is an expert in energy modelling and software development. He has recently built a mini-grid in Arunachal Pradesh, India.

Nicolas Mora-Guarda

Project delivery and customer insights

Nicolas works on project delivery quality and standards. He also works on converting data analytics into valuable customer insights.

Nikolai Kraler

Software Engineering & Artificial Inteligence

Nikolai is an expert in software engineering and artificial intelligence. He primarily works on developing VIDA.

Philippe Raisin

Earth observation and machine learning

Philippe is an expert in earth observation and data analytics using AI technology. He leads TFE Energy’s current engagement with the European Space Agency (ESA).

Sam Duby

Energy access engineering and data analytics

Sam has more than 15 years of on-ground experience of developing mini-grids and digital technologies for the sector. He co-founded the mini-grid smart metering company StemaCo. He holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering

Sebastian Lettner

Junior AI engineer

Sebastian is a junior AI engineer at appliedAI. He currently studies Electrical and Computer Engineering at TU Munich.

Sebastian Wagner

AI engineer & project manager

Sebastian is an AI engineer and project manager at appliedAI. Sebastian studied Computer Science (M.Sc.) in Munich, Shanghai and Taipei.

Shefali Kothari

Diversity, inclusion and data bias

Shefali is a climate startup strategist for enterprises that drive an inclusive clean economy. She leads VIDA’s bias mitigation strategy.

Tobias Engelmeier


Tobias has more than 15 years of experience in entrepreneurship, renewable energy, energy access and development work. He founded two renewable energy companies in India and holds a PhD in Political Science.