Microsoft has Azure datacenters in 34 regions across the globe, but still relatively untouched is the continent of Africa. It's a big gap in the company's coverage, and today it has announced plans to change that.
The tech giant will provide companies across Africa with Azure, Office 365, and Dynamics 365 from 2018. The Microsoft Cloud offering will include enterprise reliability and performance, as well as data residency.
Cloud Advancement in Africa
Eager to propel Azure growth in the region, Microsft's cloud head Scott Guthrie shared some interesting examples and statistics.
M-KOPA Solar is one of those. The company leverages the cloud to provide affordable, pay-as-you-go energy to over 500,000 homes. Another highlight was AGIN, who provides farmers with data sharing facilities and other key services.
However, this isn't the extent of Microsoft's plans for Africa. In it's Cloud for Global Good scheme, it lays down what it hopes to achieve by such a move:
- “Helping to transform and modernize 728,000 small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) by bringing their companies online, with more than 17,000 continuing to use the 4Afrika hub to promote and grow their businesses.
- Using the Microsoft Cloud to bring access to training and education, building job skills for more than 775,000 people in Africa on subjects ranging from digital literacy to software development.”
Those goals will require further investment and significant effort on Microsoft's part. For now, though, it can be happy with the next milestone: the total number of regions will soon be at 40.