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 Microsoft and G42 Announce $1 Billion Digital Investments in Kenya


Microsoft and G42 Announce $1 Billion Digital Investments in Kenya

The US tech giant Microsoft and G42, Abu Dhabi-based unique technology group, on Wednesday announced a comprehensive package of digital investments in Kenya, as part of an initiative with Kenya’s Ministry of Information, Communications and the Digital Economy.

In collaboration with Microsoft and other stakeholders, G42 will lead the arrangement of an initial investment of $1 billion for the various components outlined in the comprehensive package. One of the Kenyan investment priorities is a state-of-art green data centre that will be built by G42 and its partners to run Microsoft Azure in a new East Africa Cloud Region.

The initiative will include four additional pillars that will be pursued with local partners: (1) local-language AI model development and research; (2) an East Africa Innovation Lab coupled with broad AI digital skills training; (3) international and local connectivity investments; and (4) collaboration with the government of Kenya to support safe and secure cloud services across East Africa.

A letter of intent (LoI) formalising the relationship will be signed on Friday between Microsoft, G42 and Kenya’s Ministry of Information, Communications and the Digital Economy, Microsoft, G42 and Kenya’s Ministry of Information, Communications and the Digital Economy, during Kenyan President William Ruto’s state visit to the US, the first state visit by a sitting African head of state in nearly two decades.

Sustainable Data Centre Infrastructure

As part of the agreement, G42, in collaboration with local partners, will design and build a state-of-the-art data centre campus in Olkaria, Kenya, run entirely on renewable geothermal energy and designed with state-of-the-art water conservation technology.

The data centre will run on and provide access to Microsoft Azure through a new East Africa Cloud Region, which will become operational within 24 months of the signing of the definitive agreements.

This cloud region will provide customers access to scalable, secure, high-speed cloud and AI services to accelerate cloud adoption and the digital transformation of businesses, customers and partners across Kenya and East Africa.

Dr William Ruto said that this partnership is bigger than technology itself and is about coming together of three countries with a common vision of a nation empowered by technology, where every citizen has the opportunity to thrive in the global digital landscape. It’s about building a future where Kenya flourishes as a digital leader.

“This LoI is a stepping stone toward a brighter, more connected and digitally empowered future for the USA, Kenya and the UAE. It embodies our collective aspiration to bridge the digital divide, accelerate technological innovation, and pave the way for a thriving digital economy that benefits the entire African continent and beyond,” he added.

Brad Smith, vice chair and president of Microsoft, said that this partnership highlights a real opportunity to bring digital technology to the Global South in a safe and secure manner.

“This represents the single largest and broadest digital investment in Kenya’s history and reflects our confidence in the country, the government, its people and the future of East Africa,” he said.

G42’s Group CEO Peng Xiao said that in partnership with Microsoft, they were excited to work with the Kenyan government to usher in a transformative era for the digital ecosystem in Kenya and the region.

“By establishing a green data centre and developing AI tailored to the local culture, G42 is committed to fostering sustainable technological growth. This initiative will empower the Kenyan government and communities with robust, secure cloud services and AI capabilities, providing the foundation for a thriving digital economy across the region,” he added.

Global Business Magazine

Global Business Magazine

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