Google has revealed that it will be opening its first product development centre in Africa. The centre will be opened in Nairobi and will be used to build “transformative” products and services for the African market and the world.
This announcement comes a few weeks after Microsoft opened the African Development Centre in Nairobi with the aim of employing over 450 individuals. VISA also opened its first Innovation Studio in Nairobi that will help with promoting innovation and creating opportunities for clients and fintech partners to co-create market-relevant payment and commerce solutions throughout the region.
Google is joining these two great companies in opening its first product development centre in Africa in Nairobi. This is good news for local developers who should have great opportunities for employment by global tech companies. I hope that the move by Microsoft, Google and VISA will attract even more companies to set up operations in Kenya.
The product development centre in Nairobi will employ over 100 talents including software engineers, designers, and researchers. This will happen over the next two years and the company says the hired individuals will help solve difficult and technical challenges for people in Africa.
“Africa has been at the forefront of innovation, and we believe that we are going to continue to develop and innovate right here from the continent,” said Google’s policy lead for Sub-Saharan Africa Charles Murito.
“We have 300 million people on the internet in the region [Africa] today. We also know that in the course of the rest of this decade, we’re going to have another half a billion people who will experience internet for the very first time, which is why it is incredibly important that we build products and experiences that are helpful to these people that are going to be experiencing the internet just in Africa,” said Google in Africa managing director, Nitin Gajria.