African Press Association

IBM investment brings digital skills to Africa



JOHANNESBURG – TECHNOLOGY firm, IBM, is investing US$70 million in building digital, cloud and cognitive information technology skills to help support a 21st century workforce in Africa.

The initiative tagged IBM Digital – Nation Africa, provides a cloud-based learning platform designed to provide free skills development programmes for up to 25 million African youths over five years, enabling digital competence and nurturing innovation in the continent.

This is part of the American multinational technology company’s global quest to build the next generation of skills needed for “New Collar” careers.

“New Collar” is a term used by IBM to describe new kinds of careers that do not always require a four-year college degree but rather sought-after skills in cyber security, data science, artificial intelligence, and cloud among others.

With the aim of equipping as many as 25 million people with sought-after skills over the next five years, the programme will be launched from IBM’s regional offices in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Morocco and Egypt.

This will enable the expansion of the initiative across the continent.

According to IBM, for the youth of Africa to be able to benefit from a cognitive future, there needs to be a much higher level of digital literacy.

IBM has a direct presence in 24 African countries and has made several significant investments on the continent in recent years.

The company has a research laboratory in Nairobi, Kenya and opened a second research facility in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2016.
IBM has been present in Africa since the 1920’s.

– CAJ News