Google is investing $ 1 billion in Nigeria, South Africa and others for the digital economy | The Guardian Nigeria News

. The Equiano undersea cable is to run through S’Africa, Namibia, Nigeria and St. Helena
. Offers $ 10 million soft loans to help SMBs mitigate the effects of COVID-19.

The search giant Google will invest $ 1 billion in Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya and other countries in the digital transformation of the region over the next five years.

The investment is focused on providing more Africans with fast and affordable internet access; Building helpful products; Support to entrepreneurship and small businesses; and help nonprofits improve lives across Africa.

The announcement was made yesterday at the first Google for Africa event, which was held virtually and via livestream.

The proposed $ 1 billion investment announced by Google and Alphabet’s chief executive officer, Sundar Pichai, will help provide affordable internet access and develop useful products. promotes entrepreneurship and technology; Strengthening companies embarking on digital transformation and renewed funding for nonprofits in the region.

Pichai stated that Google is building a global infrastructure to bring faster internet to more people and reduce connectivity costs.

He said the Equiano submarine cable would run through South Africa, Namibia, Nigeria and St. Helena, connecting the continent with Europe.

The Google CEO, who said internet access is also hampered by the affordability of smartphones, said Android had developed device locking technology as part of the Android platform that will allow partners to offer funded devices.

In this regard, he announced that Google has partnered with Kenya’s largest carrier Safaricom to support the launch of the first device financing plan in Kenya and that initiative with partners such as Airtel, MTN, Orange, Transsion Holdings and Vodacom on the whole To expand Africa. and more.

According to him, these partnerships will help millions of first-time smartphone users gain access to high quality, affordable Android smartphones.

According to Pichar, Google.org is expanding its commitment to supporting nonprofits working to improve lives across Africa with $ 40 million to help more partners respond to challenges they face first in their communities Hand see.

Pichar said Google will invest in black-led startups in Africa through a Black Founders Fund by providing cash rewards and hands-on support to over 80 African startups with equity-free funding, work space and access to expert advisors over the past three years.

He also announced the launch of an Africa investment fund. Through this fund, the company will invest $ 50 million in startups and give them access to Google’s people, network and technology to help them create meaningful products for their communities.

Working with nonprofit Kiva, Pichar announced that Google is providing $ 10 million soft loans to help small businesses and entrepreneurs in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa deal with the economic hardship caused by COVID-19 overcome.

The announcement expands Google’s ongoing support for digital transformation and entrepreneurship in Africa. In 2017, Google launched its Grow with Google initiative with the aim of training 10 million young Africans and small businesses in digital skills. To date, Google has trained over six million people in 25 African countries, with more than 60 percent of participants gaining in their careers and / or business. Google has also supported more than 50 nonprofits across Africa with investments of over $ 16 million, providing hundreds of millions of Africans with first-time access to Internet services on Android.

Google’s Managing Director in Africa, Nitin Gajria, added, “I’m so inspired by the innovative African tech startup scene. In the past year we have seen more rounds of investment in tech startups than ever before. I firmly believe that no one can solve Africa’s biggest problems better than Africa’s young developers and startup founders. We look forward to deepening and supporting our partnership with Africa’s innovators and entrepreneurs. “

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