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VENTURES AFRICA – US-based technology giant, IBM has announced an expansive push of its operations across Africa with the opening of an IBM Innovation Centre in Lagos, Nigeria.
The new facility is designed to accelerate innovation for Nigerian and West African business, providing IT partners, developers, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and academics access to enhanced cloud capabilities and extensive big data and analytic resources.
“The investment will help fuel growth in Nigeria’s IT sector and to support the use of advanced technology service delivery for the public sector and commercial business growth, particularly expansion in West Africa,” IBM West Africa Country General Manager, Taiwo Otiti said.
Adoption of cloud technology in Africa has reached a tipping point and in Nigeria alone, cloud usage is expected to more than double to 80 percent of businesses in the next year. In addition, the growing proliferation of mobile phones and tablets is accelerating the opportunity to interpret data patterns to anticipate needs and deliver improved services.
As the local demand for these types of technologies and skills increases, Africa is quickly moving to the centre of global attention as the last big emerging market of the current economic era.
Sub Saharan Africa is set to be the world’s second fastest growing region with projected economic growth of over 6 percent this year, according to the IMF.
The NYSE-listed multinational is keen to take advantage of this explosive growth by focusing on providing solutions that use Big Data and Analytics as well as cloud technologies to solve key local challenges such as improving government services, digitising banking services and enhancing customer centricity in telecommunications.