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Could Africa be the next Silicon Valley?

Yemi Osinbajo, Vice-President of Nigeria, attends a panel session at the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum, WEF, in Davos, Switzerland, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018. (Laurent Gillieron/Keystone via AP)

(© KEYSTONE / LAURENT GILLIERON)

At one point the idea of developing a startup in Africa, was unknown and far-fetched. However, the new large-tech labs in Ghana or Nigeria are looking to emulate the success of their colleagues in Silicon Valley.

The “Vibranium Valley” project , which is located in Yaba, Nigeria, was in command of the Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo. The project aims to deliver a comprehensive, state-of-the-art space specifically for tech startups.

In May, Google and Facebook also have their own tech initiatives in Nigeria, according to a report from Phys.org.

Vice-President Osinbajo recently traveled to California to discuss with tech investors, the future of Africa’s tech industry and what he believes could be a “fourth industrial revolution.”

Welcome to the Vice-President of Nigeria @ProfOsinbajo the Googleplex today – great to chat with him about the possibilities of the digital economy in Nigeria pic.twitter.com/XbUBytOpx1

— Sundar Pichai (@sundarpichai) July 10, 2018

“We can’t get the kind of classrooms today as we have seen the growth of the nigerian population, so technology may be the way to education and learning forward,” he said, according to Africa-online.com.

In addition to Nigeria and the tech press of the other countries, such as Ghana have focused attention to the promotion of technological involvement in Africa.

According to the “Around The World” blog, Google announced last month that it will launch Africa’s first artificial intelligence research center, which later this year in Accra, Ghana.

Another major driving factor for this initiative is Africa’s abundant population. According to The UN Population Division, africa’s population is estimated at 1.2 billion. By 2050 the U. N. estimates the population will double to 2.4 billion.

“There is a clear opportunity for companies like Facebook and Google to really go in and put a stick in the sand,” said Daniel Ives, a technology researcher at GBH Insights in New York, according to Phys.org.

On 22 May, Facebook opened the NG_Hub in Nigeria, “its first flagship community hub space in Africa, in partnership with Cchub,” says The Guardian. During the opening of NG_Hub, Facebook’s head of public policy in Africa Ebele Okobi said that the goal was to cultivate the emerging technology of the community.”

“The social network has pledged to train 50,000 people in the whole country to give them the digital skills they need to succeed,” she added, according to Phys.org.

 

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