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Microsoft unveils technology development centres in 2 African countries

American technology giant, Microsoft Corporation, has unveiled its first Africa Development Centre (ADC), with two offices in Nairobi, Kenya, and Lagos, Nigeria.

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Microsoft, Artificial Intelligence, 4Africa, Microsoft appoints Gafar Lawal as new Managing Director 

American technology giant, Microsoft Corporation, has unveiled its first Africa Development Centre (ADC), with two offices in Nairobi, Kenya, and Lagos, Nigeria.

The ADC is worth $100 million: Microsoft said that an estimation of the investment in the ADC project and employment of qualified local engineers sums up at $100 million in the first five years of operation.

The company further disclosed that it plans to hire highly-qualified to develop the technologies suitable for Nigeria and Kenya.

“Our desire is to recruit exceptional engineering talent and provide the opportunity to work on the latest technologies suitable for Kenya, Nigeria and the rest of the world. In doing so, engineers are able to enjoy meaningful work from their home countries, while plugged into a global engineering and development organisation.”

The goal of the centre: The ADC will serve as a premier centre of engineering for Microsoft, building world-class talent capable of creating innovative solutions for local and global impact. It is expected to establish a collaborative engineering springboard for new technology investments in Kenya.

Commenting further on the plans for the Africa Development Centres, Microsoft‘s Vice President for Gaming, Phil Spencer, said the following:

“The ADC will be unlike any other existing investment on the continent. It will help us better listen to our customers, develop locally and scale for global impact.

“Beyond that, it’s an opportunity to engage further with African partners, academia, governments and developers – driving impact and innovation in sectors important to Africa.”

This is one amongst Microsoft’s many projects in Africa: This move follows Microsoft‘s recent initiative to make Artificial Intelligence (AI) available to every country in Africa through its 4Africa initiatives.

About Microsoft: Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational technology company with headquarters in Redmond, Washington.

It develops, manufactures, licenses, supports, and sells computer software, consumer electronics, personal computers, and related services. The company’s best-known software products are the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems, the Microsoft Office suite, as well as the Internet Explorer and Edge Web browsers.

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Its flagship hardware products are the Xbox video game consoles and the Microsoft Surface lineup of touchscreen personal computers.

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    Business

    FG explains why Lagos-Ibadan rail line was not linked to the sea

    The government in its explanation said that the delay was due to disruption by trucks going in and out of the port complex.

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    FG needs $656 million to complete Lagos-Ibadan railway project – Amaechi, Nigeria loses N150 billion annually to shipping tariffs, Ibadan to Kano rail construction

    The Federal Government has stated why the China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) Nigeria Limited could not link the final part of the Lagos-Ibadan rail line to the sea.

    The government in its explanation said that it was due to disruption by trucks going in and out of the port complex.

    According to a press statement signed by the Director, Press and Public Relations of the Federal Ministry of Transportation, Eric Ojiekwe, this disclosure was made by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, while on a routine tour of the Lagos-Ibadan rail line project on Saturday, April 10, 2021.

    The Minister pointed out that the original blueprint for the Lagos-Ibadan rail line project was not adhered to by CCECC Nigeria Limited and TEAM consortium and therefore warned that the master plan of the soon to commence Ibadan-Kano rail line project should not be changed.

    The statement from the ministry partly reads, “The Nigerian Government has restated its commitment to connect the whole country by rail with the soon to commence Ibadan-Kano Standard Gauge Rail project.”

    Amaechi forewarned that the master plan of the soon to commence project should not be changed as the original blueprint for the Lagos-Ibadan wasn’t adhered to by Messrs CCECC Nigeria and TEAM consortium. The Minister who rode the train from Ebute-Meta to the 8.72 km Apapa Port Spur line, informed the media that the inability of Messrs CCECC Nigeria to link the final part of the rail line down to the sea is rather due to disruption by trucks going in and out of the port complex.’’

    The Minister had noted that the Federal Government has paid its share of the counterpart funding of the Ibadan-Kano rail line project and is waiting for China-Exim bank to ratify its side of the agreement for the project to commence.

    He also advised the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) to acquire more land around the train stations and the rail tracks for future development adding that this will be near impossible to do in the future as whatever space available now would have been taken over by businesses attracted to the rail line.

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    It can be recalled that full commercial train services commenced on the Lagos-Ibadan rail line after train operations commenced on December 7, 2020, with only Lagos, Ibadan and Abeokuta residents enjoying the train services.

    This is because other minor and major stations along that route were yet to be completed.

     

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    Manufacturing

    Industrial Index loses -12.39 points, as BUA and Lafarge Cement shares top losers list

    The NSE Industrials index lost 12.39 index points in the first trading week in the month of April.

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    Manufacturing: Activity levels pick up albeit readings still below water

    The Nigerian Stock Exchange Industrial Index at the close of trading activities for the first week in the month of April closed on a bearish note, following a 0.66% decrease in the shares of BUA CEMENT and Lafarge.

    At the close of trading activities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange on the 9th of April 2021, the industrial index depreciated by 55.01 index points, to close lower at 1,928.18 index points for the week.

    When compared to the overall performance of the market, the NSE Industrial index underperformed, noting that the NSE All-Share Index and Market Capitalization depreciated by 0.66% to close the week at 38,866.39 and N20.3350 trillion respectively.

    READ: COVID-19, VAT, FX scarcity adversely impacted our operations in 2020 – Nigerian Breweries boss says

    What you should know

    The NSE Industrial Index was designed to provide an investable benchmark to capture the performance of the Industrial Sector. It comprises the most capitalized and liquid companies in the industrial sector and is based on the market capitalization methodology.

    The index tracks the performance of ten industrial companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange which includes Dangote, BUA, and Lafarge Cement.

    The overall performance of the companies for the week was bearish, as the index closed on a negative note driven by the decrease in the share price of BUA Cement and Lafarge.

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    MEYER (19.51) was the only gainer for the week, while BUACEMENT (-1.09%) and LAFARGE WAPCO (-3.00%) were the only losers for the week.

    GAINER

    • MEYER up by19.51% to close at N0.49.

    LOSER

    • WAPCO down by -3.00% to close at N21.00.
    • BUACEMENT down by -1.09% to close at N72.70.

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