This is Google’s first product development centre on the continent, and it will generate “transformative” goods and services for the African and global markets. Last October, Google announced plans to invest $1 billion over five years. Google’s second significant R&D investment in Africa follows a 2019 AI and research facility in Ghana.
Google said it will hire over 100 tech talent over the next two years, including software engineers, researchers, and designers, to assist address complex and technical challenges like improving the smartphone experience for Africans or constructing a more stable internet infrastructure.
Google is the latest tech company to open an innovation hub in Nairobi. Visa announced two weeks ago that it had opened its first innovation centre in Nairobi to co-create payment and commerce solutions with partners.
“Africa has always been at the vanguard of innovation,” said Google’s policy lead for Sub-Saharan Africa, Charles Murito, during the briefing.