Oracle opens first data center for cloud computing in Africa

Oracle, a cloud infrastructure firm, says it has opened a data center in South Africa — its first cloud region in Africa to meet the rapidly growing demand for enterprise cloud services.

The company announced this in a statement on Wednesday, joining the likes of Microsoft and Amazon in setting up facilities on the continent.

The opening marks Oracle’s 37th cloud region worldwide — with plans to have at least 44 cloud regions by the end of 2022.

“The fourth industrial revolution, which is powered by cloud-led technologies, has significantly accelerated in South Africa and the wider African continent,” Richard Smith, executive vice president, EMEA, Oracle, said.

“In recent months, cloud technologies have played a vital role in helping African public and private sector organizations ensure business continuity, deliver essential services, and meet evolving customer expectations. The Oracle Johannesburg region offers a next-generation cloud to run any application faster and more securely for less, helping businesses build resilience, agility and achieve improved ROI.”

The statement added that the Johannesburg region is built on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI), enabling customers to easily migrate IT workloads and data platforms to the cloud or build new cloud-native applications.

Increased demand for faster computing from African banks and telecom firms has attracted big cloud operators into the largely untapped market, with Microsoft the first to launch data centers in South Africa, followed by Amazon and Huawei.

In December 2021, Equinix Inc., a US-based internet connectivity giant, announced plans to acquire MainOne, West African connectivity and data solutions company, for $320 million. The deal will see Equinix entering the west African market as the first step in its long-term strategy to become an African carrier neutral digital infrastructure company.

Mark Walker, associate vice president, Sub-Saharan Africa, International Data Corporation (IDC), said 60 percent of organizations in South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria are planning to adopt cloud over the next 12-18 months.

“Public cloud services adoption is accelerating at CAGR of 25 percent year on year between 2020 and 2025 in Sub-Saharan Africa, and IDC projects that the growth momentum will continue,” Walker said.

“The role of cloud in enabling innovation is underscored by the priority organizations have given to it as part of their digital transformation initiatives.

“Cloud-based technologies have helped organizations weather the COVID-19 crisis, and the cloud is now helping them build resilient organizations that can withstand uncertainties. The Johannesburg region will boost regional cloud infrastructure availability.”


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