Huawei South Africa announced that its third data centre availability zone in South Africa will be launched three years ahead of schedule, as part of Huawei Cloud’s “Everything as a Service” approach to cloud investments around the globe.
The firm concurrently announced the release of its 5.8 million USD (R100 million) Cloud Spark programme that will provide cloud services to bolster the businesses of over 1000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) for the next three years.
Notably, investment in cloud computing has grown 32% in South Africa. At a Huawei Eco-Connect event held at the Sandton Convention Centre, Huawei affirmed that strong growth in demand for cloud services allowed Huawei to expand and grow its availability zones in South Africa, after opening its first zone in 2019.
Once released, the third availability zone will halve cloud latency in South Africa to 20ms.
All-digital, All-cloud, AI-driven Mindset
Speaking virtually at the event, Mark Chen, Vice President of Global Marketing and Sales Service for Huawei Cloud, observed that the South African market is the “most important sector” within its strategy, saying that “Huawei Cloud is proud to announce our R100 million investment towards the development of South African partners.”
Jay Zhou, Managing Director at Huawei Cloud South Africa, affirmed the growing importance of cloud technology in South Africa, noting that Huawei’s “Everything as a Service” approach is based on an “all-digital, all-cloud, AI-driven mindset”.
Zhou also expressed his support for Huawei’s commitment to boosting digitalisation in South Africa, saying that “we are going to build a smart ecosystem in South Africa for South Africa.” To realise Huawei’s ambitions for a new smart ecosystem and support local businesses, Huawei will be launching the Cloud Spark initiative with Silicon Cape.
Co-founder and CEO at Silicon Cape, Dr. Sumarie Roodt, said that “Africa is positioned to become one of the biggest global consumer markets within the next 10 to 15 years. E-commerce is exploding across the continent with the African Continental Free Trade Agreement in place and we couldn’t think of a better time to work with Huawei.”
Cloud Spark is a hybrid accelerator programme for tech start-ups and SMEs that will support them in developing their businesses and cloud solutions.
Several local businesses spoke out at Huawei’s Eco-connect event about their experiences working with Huawei. For instance, Willem Groenewald, CEO of the Automobile Association of South Africa (AA), observed that “what struck me about Huawei is that they are really invested in the business.” AA had used Huawei Cloud services and AI to improve road safety for South African drivers, passengers, and pedestrians.
Huawei will launch the third availability zone in Johannesburg. Zhou affirmed that “in future, I think we still need to do more…my target is to build a trusted cloud in South Africa.”
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