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[Africa Cloud Review] Simon Ngunjiri: Cloud providers are generating massive revenues in Africa


As the demand for cloud in Africa continues to increase, cloud providers are trying to cope up while generating massive revenues at the same time.

Countries like South Africa have seen a rapid introduction of new CSPs, with Microsoft Azure Cloud AWS and even Huawei cloud entering the market as a gateway for the rest of Africa. 

Growth in cloud computing in the continent has been a megatrend over the last decade, with the market experiencing triple-digit annual growth as recently as 2015. This according to The cloud migration forecast report by Deloitte.

Recently, Huawei announced that its cloud business has generated more than $5 million in revenue over the past year and garnered more than 1 000 partner organisations in Africa.

Stone He, the new president for the Huawei Cloud Business in Southern Africa, said the revenue was mainly generated from South Africa, with some parts coming from Nigeria and Kenya.

SAP SE’s profits also rose sharply in its first fiscal quarter, helped by strong growth in its cloud business. The company’s cloud revenue rose 13%, to $2.57 billion. Combined cloud and software revenue edged up 6%, to $6.52 billion. The company says cloud growth was strong across SAP’s line of businesses, including the Qualtrics experience management business

“This quarter was one of the strongest quarters in the history of SAP, We saw the fastest growth in new cloud business in five years.”” said Chief Executive Christian Klein. “

The Cloud and Data Centre Growth in Emerging Markets, 2021-2025 report by ResearchAndMarkets also notes that Data Centre revenues over 10 Emerging Markets are forecast to grow over the period – Overall Data Centre revenues are forecast to increase from USD $11.6 billion (2021) up to USD $18 billion (2025.

Cloud is a catalyst for digital transformation in Africa

Cloud, just like any other technology such as the Internet of Things (IoT), and Artificial Intelligence (AI)/Machine Learning (ML) is a catalyst for digital transformation. 

Mick McNeil, Vice President, Business Development, Microsoft Business, Logicalis, notes that unlocking and activating value from data has clear top-line benefits for organisations by moving to the cloud.

‘’Companies already in the cloud can benefit from an increased pace of product development that directly aligns IT infrastructure with business goals and objective’’ he says.

As Nick Treurnicht, the Customer Engineer for Google Workspace at DigiCloud Africa noted in a recent interview with us, now is the best time to adopt the Cloud.

‘’Africa has an amazing entrepreneurial spirit that we wish to see growing over the next decade.  The Cloud not only helps you scale up when you need the services, but also scale down when it’s not needed during a lockdown as we saw in 2020.’’ he said.

Simon Ngunjiri Muraya is Google Cloud Architect at Incentro Africa.

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