Microsoft Azure Expanding Regions to Africa

Posted by Augusto Alvarez on May 30, 2017
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In the cloud market share, Microsoft continues to take big and important leaps, now with a very innovative approach: Opening Azure Regions in Johannesburg and Cape Town (South Africa), where they will offer Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics 365 services. This region will be #40 in Microsoft Azure, no other cloud provider owns as many regions globally for their services.

World Wide Map of Microsoft Azure Services

Scott Guthrie, Executive Vice President in the Cloud and Enterprise Group from Microsoft, made this announcement and also added: “Few places in the world are as dynamic and diverse as Africa today. In this landscape, we see enormous opportunity for the cloud to accelerate innovation, support people across the continent who are working to transform their businesses, explore new entrepreneurship opportunities and help solve some of the world’s hardest problems”.

Scott Guthrie - Executive Vice President in the Cloud and Enterprise Group from Microsoft

The region will be available in 2018, but no specific date is announced yet. Additionally, specific locations for the datacenters or detailed images about the area will not be revealed for obvious security reasons. Microsoft and partners in the Microsoft network already support important customers in Africa, which makes this announcement a strong move to expand their business. Some of the customers in the Africa region:

  • M-KOPA Solar has used mobile and cloud technology to develop an affordable pay-as-you-go solar energy solution to provide electricity to more than 500,000 homes.
  • AGIN has leveraged the cloud to enable an app to connect 140,000 smallholder farmers to key services, enabling them to share data and facilitate $1.3 million per month in finance, insurance and other services.
  • Standard Bank. One of the largest banks in South Africa and operates in 20 countries in Africa alone, and in several other regions worldwide. Brenda Niehaus, group CIO at Standard Bank, said: “We greatly value Microsoft’s commitment to invest in cloud services delivered from Africa. Standard Bank already relies on cloud technology to provide our customers with a seamless experience”.

In Africa, Microsoft technologies provided to 728,000 small and mid-size organizations the possibility to go online to help them transform and modernize their businesses. With 17,000 of these companies using the 4Afrika hub to promote and grow their businesses.

4Africa@4: Looking back at four years of Microsoft 4Africa - poster

The Microsoft Cloud is also helping Africans build job skills, with 775,000 trained on subjects ranging from digital literacy to software development. We anticipate the Microsoft Cloud from Africa will fuel extensive new opportunities for other 17,000 regional partners and customers alike.


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Augusto Alvarez
Augusto is currently working as Principal Consultant in Dell EMC, originally from Argentina and now based in the US. His role currently is designing customer requirements into specific systems and processes; also performing technical briefings; leading architectural design sessions and proofs of concept. Augusto is also the author from two published App-V books: "Getting Started Microsoft Application Virtualization 4.6" and "Microsoft Application Virtualization Advanced Guide"

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