A former contestant on The Apprentice has launched the world’s first data-driven hand dryer.

Syed Ahmed, who appeared on series two of the BBC programme, has raised £1.5 million to develop the new technology, which is also among the most environmentally friendly devices of its kind.

Conceived by Ahmed’s eco technology company, Savortex, the EcoCurve dryer has a low carbon footprint and is fitted with a real-time data monitoring portal to help businesses measure costs and improve their carbon efficiency.

The dryer is currently being trialled by the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), with predicted savings of £30,000 and 14 tonnes of waste per building, per year.

Ahmed said: “There are 70 million washrooms globally. Twenty per cent of these are fitted with energy-hungry dryers but then when you factor in that a massive eighty per cent are still using damaging and very expensive paper towels, you can see why we wanted to build something that disrupts this very inefficient market.”

“The EcoCurve data dryer sensors provide information about washroom energy use over time. This reflects the long-standing, foundational importance of energy efficiency to the green building movement,” he added.

Article originally published in The Independent