Microsoft has revealed plans to spread its global data centre footprint in Africa, as it will build its first hyperscale data centres in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
The company plans to deliver its Microsoft Cloud services, along with Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics 365 across the data centres which will be available from 2018.
This will bring Microsoft up to 40 cloud regions around the world, and is expected to enable organisations and people from Cairo to Cape Town to accelerate their journey towards cloud computing.
Microsoft says the investment is part of its mission to empower every person and organisation in the world to achieve more, as well as being part of the company’s effort to create a Cloud for Global Good platform.
These will include, advanced help to transform and modernise 728,000 SMEs by bringing their companies online, with over 17,000 to continue using the 4Afrika hub to promote and grow their business.
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Whilst also using Microsoft Cloud to offer training and education access, the technology company is to build job skills for over 775,000 people in Africa on courses such as digital literacy and software development.
Scott Gutherie, EVP for Cloud and Enterprise, Microsoft said: “With cloud services ranging from intelligent collaboration to predictive analytics, the Microsoft Cloud delivered from Africa will enable developers to build new and innovative apps, customers to transform their businesses and governments to better serve the needs of their citizens.”
It is to also deliver enterprise-grade reliability and performance together with data residency across the located areas, while customers across Africa, which includes start-ups and NGOs, will have the opportunity to use Microsoft’s cloud services that will be delivered from the new regions in order to power innovation for Africa and people around the world.
Jon Tullet, Senior Researcher, IDC MEA said: “By establishing hyperscale cloud data centre capacity in South Africa, Microsoft is directly addressing customers’ concerns, and demonstrating commitment to the delivery of cloud services within the country and the region as a whole.”
Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure currently supports over a billion customers and 20 million businesses around the world, which is more than any other cloud provider.