BY EMEKA AGINAM
Multinaltional technology and consulting corporation, International Business Machine (IBM) while expanding local reach has predicted that cloud technology adoption in Nigeria is expected to grow to about 80 percent by 2015.
At the commissioning of new IBM innovation centre in Nigeria recently , the Country General Manager, West Africa, Taiwo Otiti said the new facility was designed to accelerate innovation for the country and West African business and IT skills.
He said that using the centre, clients, IT partners, developers, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and academics can now access enhanced cloud capabilities and extensive big data and analytics resources.
He explained that adoption of cloud technology in Africa has reached a tipping point and in In Nigeria alone, he said cloud usage is expected to more than double to 80 percent of businesses in the next year, adding that the growing proliferation of mobile phones and tablets is accelerating the opportunity to interpret data patterns to anticipate needs and deliver improved services.
IBM noted that as the local demand for these types of technologies and skills increases, Africa is quickly moving to the center of global attention as the last big emerging market of the current economic era.
Already, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) informed that sub-Saharan Africa is set to be the world’s second fastest growing region with projected economic growth of over six percent this year.
To take advantage of this explosive growth, Otitu said the new centre will focus on providing solutions that use Big Data & Analytics and cloud technologies to solve key local challenges such as improving government services, digitising banking services and enhancing customer centricity in telecommunications.
According to him, clients will be able to participate in virtual
and in-person training, test out new products, network with peers from around the world,
and receive mentoring and guidance from IT and business experts. For example, he said the centre will provide clients hands-on access to cloud-based industry solutions such as IBM Intelligent Operations designed to provide cities, governments and utilities with a central command center for the use of predictive analytics to enhance efficiency and manage all their operations.
“Our investment in this centre is in line with our strategy to help fuel growth in Nigeria’s IT sector and to support the use of advanced technology service delivery for the public sector and commercial business growth, particularly expansion in West Africa.IBM Innovation Centres are designed to help clients envisage their future, illustrated using IBM social, mobile, analytics and cloud solutions, combined with industry focused experience and expertise. Through this centre, we will bring the reach of IBM’s global capabilities and thought leadership closer to local and
He said IBM believes its new test and demonstration environment will serve to cut the costs and complexity of assessing IT solutions, but will also assist CIOs in presenting strong business cases for advanced technology adoption.
Besides, he informed that IBM is already working with the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) to create the world’s largest and most comprehensive clinical dataset on cancer patients by building cancer registries in developing nations, beginning in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Speaking at the event, Managing Director of Bankers Warehouse Ltd, a non-bank financial services institution, Victor Hammond said, “Innovation has become a key driver of positive change in developed economies, and IBM has blazed the trail once again in this market with its new Innovation centre.
“I foresee this facility becoming a key driver of technology innovation in Nigeria, helping to promote the culture ofknowledge incubation and scientific enquiry in all sectors of the national economy.”