SAP has today announced a seven-year plan to up-skill local talent and drive sustainable innovation and growth in Africa. The move is in line with its commitment to make Africa transition to a networked, technology-driven innovative economy.
The company operates across 51 African countries including Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia and Mauritania in which it plans to invest up to $500 million through 2020 as it continues to build on the region’s impressive double-digit growth rate momentum. The goal is to establish the African region as one of the company’s top-five growth markets globally.Much of the direct investment will be outside South Africa, where SAP already has a solid footprint.
The company’s investment is based on Africa’s unique growth potential and readiness to innovate. . “The SAP Executive Board strongly believes that now is the right time to take our engagement and commitment to expand in Africa to the next level. SAP’s additional investment in the continent reflects SAP’s vision to help the world run better by delivering leading-edge innovation.” said Pfungwa Serima, CEO of SAP Africa.
SAP plans to engage and invest in even more markets while helping build the appropriate talent base for the IT industry, and support customers and partners by actively contributing toward crucial technology and business skills-sets and new employment opportunities in Africa.
The company held its first graduation November last year where Graduates from the Skills for Africa training certification were matched with job internships with SAP customers and partners, including some of Kenya’s leading companies, like Bidco, Mumias Sugar Company and other leading SAP partners in the region.
Innovative technologies such as mobility and the cloud are among the fastest SAP growing IT segments and are already having a significant impact on businesses’ ability to grow and innovate. Solid, forward-looking investment plans will not only dramatically strengthen Africa’s ICT landscape, but also its ability to compete on a global scale.
SAP Africa is leveraging its established presence and valued ecosystem relationships to immediately commence execution of this plan across the four key pillars that they believe will drive the greatest growth and impact for the continent.
The SAP Africa growth plan is built on the following pillars:
Accelerating industry growth in energy and natural resources, utilities, public sector, financial services and telecommunications in the core countries of South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Angola and Morocco.
Promoting innovation on the continent by accelerating the roll-out of core innovative SAP technology solutions that can help address the enormous resource challenges Africa is facing. Africa is in a unique position to absorb the latest technology innovations, including mobile, cloud and the flagship in-memory platform SAP HANA®, as many businesses are not burdened with legacy systems already in place.
Enhancing small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) growth, which contributes 40 percent to Africa’s GDP, by selecting Kenya as the next market for the company’s Emerging Entrepreneur Initiative, due to the strength and potential of the Kenyan market to grow and support a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Building foundational growth and skill development with the launch of additional Skills for Africa Scholarship Programme sessions in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria and Angola by year end by fostering an open business ecosystem of SAP-qualified consultants to execute on various projects. This follows on the heels of the announcement last year of SAP Africa’s skills development agreement with the World Bank.