Microsoft Investing R1,3 Billion in South Africa to Boost Job Creation and Digital Transformation

Microsoft has committed over R1.3 billion to South Africa, targeting support for Small, Medium, and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) and gearing the nation up for advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI).

According to Microsoft South Africa, this investment is part of a larger strategy to drive inclusive growth, strengthen the digital economy, and promote innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the country.

“The fund will assist black South Africans in non-tech sectors to harness the power of technology and improve their competitiveness and ability to innovate and expand their operations,” said Ebrahim Patel, minister of trade, industry and competition.

“It will also act as a bridge to enable young people to get training, certification, and job-placement, so that talented South Africans gain access to the opportunities that arise from an increasingly digitalized world,” the minister added.

The investment will focus on key areas such as data analysis, cloud computing, cybersecurity, AI, and machine learning. The SMME development program will emphasize not only technical skills but also entrepreneurial abilities, positioning these enterprises as key job creators.

By equipping South Africans with future-ready skills, Microsoft aims to ignite entrepreneurship, particularly among women and other disadvantaged groups.

Lillian Barnard, President of Microsoft Africa, noted that transformative technologies like cloud and AI have the potential to address some of the country’s most critical challenges while unlocking significant opportunities.

Kalane Rampai, Managing Director of Microsoft South Africa, added, “The world is rapidly evolving, and the AI era is ushering in a future rich with innovation. The potential for Africa is enormous.”

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