Google intensifies African operations with launch of first developers’ space in Lagos

NIGERIA – The first Google Developers Space in Africa has been unveiled in Lagos in a bid to enable entrepreneurs, developers, venture capitalists and investors connect and collaborate.

The Country Director, Google Nigeria, Juliet Ehimuan, described the Google Developers Space, previously known as Google Launchpad Space, as a hub for African developers, entrepreneurs and start-ups.

She noted that Google Chief Executive Officer, Sundar Pichai, made a commitment to African entrepreneurs in July 2017 to start the Launchpad Accelerator Africa programme and launch a space in Nigeria.

“This space is the next step to our support for developers across the continent,” Ehimuan said at the opening of the facility.

She said the company was committed to training 100,000 developers across Africa, adding that the launch of developer merchant support in the Google Play store had made it possible for developers to earn money through apps they built.

“We are excited to continue our journey with the African start-up and developer communities,” she added.

The Head of Operations, Launchpad Accelerator Africa, Onajite Emerhor, said Google was strengthening its commitment to supporting the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Africa by opening the Google Developers Space.

Google, an American multinational technology company that specializes in Internet-related services and products, has in the recent past stepped up its operations in Africa.

Google has so far opened offices in a number of Sub-Saharan African cities, including Nairobi (Kenya), Kampala (Uganda), Dakar (Senegal) and Lagos (Nigeria) and is pioneering various products that address the unique needs of people in the continent.

A classic example of Google Africa products is the Google Baraza (which means “taskforce” or “council” in Swahili) which allows people in countries across the continent to share knowledge with each other by asking questions and posting answers.

YouTube is also now available in Swahili (spoken in East Africa), Amharic (Ethiopia) as well as Zulu and Afrikaans (both South Africa).

In 2019, the tech Giant also opened its first Africa-based Artificial Intelligence center in Ghana’s capital city, Accra.

To further demonstrate its commitment to the African Continent, Google also supports graduate programs in Machine Intelligence at the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences center in Rwanda.

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