by Natassia Badenhorst

Microsoft partners African SMEs

4Afrika Initiative

Microsoft SA managing director, Mteto Nyati.
Mteto Nyati.jpg

Microsoft has introduced the Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative, a new effort through which the company will actively engage in Africa’s economic development to improve its global competitiveness.

By 2016, the Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative plans to help place tens of millions of smart devices in the hands of African youth, bring one million African small and medium enterprises (SMEs) online, up-skill 100 000 members of Africa’s existing workforce, and help an additional 100 000 recent graduates develop skills for employability, 75% of which Microsoft will help place in jobs.

“The world has recognised the promise of Africa, and Microsoft wants to invest in that promise. We want to empower African youth, entrepreneurs, developers and business and civic leaders to turn great ideas into a reality that can help their community, their country, the Continent, and beyond,” said Fernando de Sousa, general manager, Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative.

“The Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative is built on the dual beliefs that technology can accelerate growth for Africa, and Africa can also accelerate technology for the world.”

As a first critical step toward increasing the adoption of smart devices, Microsoft and Huawei are introducing the Huawei 4Afrika – a full functionality Windows Phone 8, which will come pre-loaded with select applications designed for Africa.

The phone will initially be available in Angola, Egypt, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and South Africa later this month.

The Huawei 4Afrika phone, which is the first in what will be a series of smart devices designed '4Afrika,' will be targeted toward university students, developers and first-time smart phone users to ensure they have affordable access to best-in-class technology to enable them to connect, collaborate, and access markets and opportunities online. 

The full article will appear in the forthcoming edition of the Black Business Quarterly magazine. 

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