Connecting Africa is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.

Innovation Hub

Google picks Nairobi for product development center

Article Image
Google is launching its first product development center in Africa – in Kenyan capital Nairobi – and is looking to hire locally.

The search giant said the new product development center will help to create "transformative products and services" for people in Africa and around the world and will be hiring engineers, product managers, UX designers and researchers "to lay the foundation for significant growth in the coming years".

"There are 300 million Internet users in Africa who are young, mobile first and have similar patterns to mobile youth globally," Nitin Gajria, MD for Google in Africa, said in a statement.

Google sees Africa as a huge growth market because by 2030 the continent will have 800 million Internet users and one-third of the world's under-35 population.

"The potential for Africa to become a leading digital economy is right on the horizon and Google is committed to accelerating Africa's digital transformation through human capital and enabling 'African-led solutions to African and global problems', through better products," Gajria added.

In October 2021, Google CEO Sundar Pichai pledged to invest $1 billion in Africa over the next five years to support the continent's digital transformation.

That investment focuses on enabling fast, affordable Internet access for more Africans, building helpful products, supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses and helping nonprofits to improve lives across Africa.

Local talent

In 2018, Google also opened an AI research center in Accra, Ghana to help drive useful innovations, and the Nairobi product development center is seen as a continuation of that investment.

"Google's mission in Africa is to make the Internet helpful to Africans and partner with African governments, policymakers, educators, entrepreneurs and business to shape the next wave of innovation in Africa," said Google's VP for Products, Suzanne Frey.

She said all Africans who are passionate about improving the digital experience of African users by building better products should apply for the open roles at the new product development center.

New hires will be tasked with solving difficult and important technical challenges such as improving the smartphone experience for people in Africa or building a more reliable Internet infrastructure.

Related posts:

*Top image source: Business photo created by DCStudio - www.freepik.com .

— The Staff, Connecting Africa

Innovation hub

Story

Moya super app takes aim at SA fintech market

Super app Moya's fintech platform, MoyaPay, aims to be South Africa's most widely used mobile money payments platform.

Story

Hot startup of the month: Kenya's Shamba Pride

This month's hot startup, Shamba Pride, wants to revolutionize the rural agricultural trade ecosystem in Kenya by transforming agro-dealers into franchised 'DigiShops.'

More Innovation hub

Guest Perspectives

Story

Omdia View: April 2022

By Omdia Analysts

This month's Omdia View highlights indicate a shift to digital transformation and operational consolidation to maximize return on investments.

Story

Omdia View: March 2022

By Omdia Analysts

This month's Omdia summary of the biggest stories in the Middle East and Africa focuses on SA's spectrum auction and new submarine cables landing in Kenya and Togo.

More Guest Perspectives

Partner perspectives

All Partner Perspectives

Flash poll

All polls

Latest video

More videos

Archived webinars

Boosting Customer Experience in the Digital Age

From the first interaction to the last payment: convert leads into clients, drive loyalty and grow your bottom line.

The digital age has ushered in a new era of customer engagement. Consumer demands and expectations are higher than ever – where an affordable but seamless online experience is now the norm.

At a time when competition for your customers is fierce, ensuring a client journey that is tailored to their needs has never been more important. The ability to build these bespoke offerings starts with understanding, and that understanding is built on data.

This webinar will explore how gathering insight is key to growing and retaining a strong customer base; we’ll unpack how CRM platforms, mobile payment, lead capture, and online marketing are key factors in building a successful 21st Century digital business.

  • Customer Experience – understanding consumer expectations of today
  • What easy steps can you take to provide a complete, immersive digital customer experience?
  • How to leverage modern digital tools to build customer loyalty

More Webinars

Sponsored video

More videos

AfricaCom perspectives

Story

Digital inclusion as a catalyst for economic empowerment: Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu

Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu talks to Connecting Africa about how digital payment solutions and mobile money are transforming the lives of small business owners, women and marginalized groups in East Africa.

Story

Accelerating women in STEM: In conversation with GirlCode's Tinyiko Simbine

GirlCode co-founder and CFO Tinyiko Simbine talks about why it's important to help girls and young women excel in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Story

How Poa Internet is unlocking meaningful connectivity in East Africa

Poa Internet's CEO Andy Halsall shares his views on what it takes to develop last-mile connectivity and get Africans online in a meaningful way.

More AfricaCom perspectives

Like us on Facebook

Newsletter Sign Up


Sign Up