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Microsoft Africa Development Center software engineers celebrate one year of working for the company

Microsoft software engineers Africa
Microsoft software engineers Africa

July 2020 signalled a milestone for Microsoft in Africa and most importantly local software engineers working with the company.

Microsoft celebrated one year of hiring African software engineers to work in its Africa based global development center.

Some of these software engineers took to social media to share the one-year anniversary package they received from Microsoft. Check out some of the posts below. Thereafter we will look at how far the company has come on its journey with the continent.

Africa is a unique opportunity … we are opening these development centers … where you see people who are very qualified for the kind of work we do

Phil Spencer, executive sponsor of the Microsoft ADC

Microsoft in Africa

Microsoft has been operating in Africa for the past thirty years. Having local offices in Senegal, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, and Egypt. With South Africa hosting the oldest Microsoft offices in Africa.

However, this has mainly been on the sales side of the business. Providing consumers and organizations, mostly governmental ones with various services. The closest you could come to Microsoft workers in Africa were either through partner organizations or Microsoft employees acting as technical account managers who implement, onboard and deploy Microsoft services for customers and clients.

Microsoft and Software Engineers in Africa

Last year the company announced it was opening its first Africa Global Development center. A decade after it announced plans to create a network of 90 software development centers around the world. The 100 million-dollar Microsoft Africa Development Center has sites in Lagos and Nairobi.

The launch event came off on the backdrop of a lot of backlash to self-professed Africa’s biggest online e-commerce site Jumia. The CEO had claimed a lack of local software engineering talent. Microsoft shared it believed in the growing local talent and that it was time to tap into that pool.

Phil Spencer, Microsoft corporate vice president and executive sponsor of the Africa Development Center, and Michael Fortin, corporate vice president at Microsoft and the lead in establishing the first ADC engineering team in Nairobi, led the pomp and pageant opening ceremonies in Nairobi, Kenya and were joined by Microsoft Technical Fellow, Alex Kipman, for the Lagos launch event.

The Nairobi Microsoft Africa Development Center site software engineers contribute to building Windows and Office 365 products and services. Whilst the Lagos site software engineers contribute to building Microsoft Azure services that power new Augmented Reality experiences.

At the launch events, Microsoft executives shared the company was going to hire about five hundred software engineers by 2023, across both center sites. With plans to hire 100 software engineers by the end of 2019.

We reached out to Microsoft for the latest updates on the Microsoft Africa development centers and haven’t gotten any feedback as at publishing this. We will bring you updates when Microsoft responds.

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