Google steps up cloud services reach in Africa with Digicloud deal



African expansion

Digicloud was officially launched this year and is committed to delivering cloud services in every African country, not just in the lower hanging fruit countries that are South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya, for instance.

Google has appointed Digicloud Africa as a distributor of Google Cloud Platform and its full suite of cloud services across Africa, as it attempts to bump up take-up among resellers and service providers and address specific market needs in different African countries.

Google Africa’s head of cloud Shai Morgan said Digicloud will be able to service every African market, and will help find suitable partners where there are currently no official resellers. “We want to drive some change [in an under-served cloud market],” he said.

Partners with data infrastructure access and big data analytics skills will also be offered artificial intelligence capabilities through the Google/Digicloud programme.

Gregory MacLennan, Digicloud Africa CEO, said: “Over the next two years, we intend to on-board at least another 50 resellers in Africa, which have the specialised skills to address the African cloud market.”

Digicloud has a number of business channels on the continent but is particularly strong in the education market, with a number of partners in that vertical.

While not having any service data centres of its own in Africa, Google is already committed to extending its reach in the African educational market, offering free tools and getting behind community projects.

On the wider connectivity front though, earlier this year, Google announced its new private subsea cable Equiano, which will offer a direct connection between Africa and Europe to help the digital transformation of the continient through greater interconnectivity.

Equiano will start in Portugal and run along the West Coast of Africa and end up in South Africa, where Digicloud is headquartered.

“Equiano has state-of-the-art infrastructure based on space-division multiplexing (SDM) technology, with approximately 20 times more network capacity than the last cable built to serve this region,” said Google.