Google’s first-ever African product development centre is to open in Nairobi, underlining the importance to the company of the African market and its growing base of internet users.
Google estimates that by the end of the 2020s Africa will host 800 million internet users. This is also a young continent, making it attractive to investors; it is likely to be home to one-third of the world’s people under 35 by 2030.
Reuters says, quoting Sundar Pichai, CEO of technology holding company Alphabet and its Google subsidiary, last October, that the company is investing $1 billion in various projects on the continent over five years to help economies accelerate their digital transformation. As well as the product development centre in Nairobi, Google has already opened an artificial intelligence centre in Accra.
And recruiting in Kenya is well under way. A blog from Suzanne Frey, vice president for products, and Nitin Gajria, the head of Google Africa, says: “Are you an aspiring engineering manager, product manager, software engineer, developer relations engineer, senior UK designer or UK researcher? Do you want to help us to create transformative products and services for people in Africa and around the world? Then apply for one of the numerous open roles at our new product development centre in Nairobi.”
It continues: “To help realise Google’s mission, we will be hiring visionary engineers, product managers, UX designers and researchers to lay the foundation for significant growth in the coming years.”
Kenyan press reports suggest that Google has announced over 100 vacancies for its newly opened office in Nairobi; local media outlets are offering guidance on how to apply.