News Column

Africa a Lucrative Market for Cloud - Report

July 4, 2014

Tintswalo Baloyi

A new report suggests Africa's rapid adoption of mobile network technology made the continent a lucrative market for the cloud.

This survey, conducted by IDG Connect on behalf of SAP Africa, highlighted the plentiful opportunities open to cloud service providers (CSPs).

The study, entitled, "Africa Set for Cloud Market Expansion, sets out the possibility for new revenue streams and business that will be accessible to CSPs that are targeting large enterprise customers during 2014 and 2015.

Many organisations within South Africa, Algeria, Kenya, Morocco, and Nigeria appear poised to increase their spending on cloud hosted infrastructure (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS) within 2014-2015 and beyond.

This, as the economic outlook for the wider region looks strong, with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicting in April 2014 that the growth of the gross domestic product in Sub-Saharan Africa is likely to increase to 5,5 percent.

According to the survey, the majority of organisations within South Africa, Algeria, Kenya, Morocco, and Nigeria have moved some virtual workloads, applications or services into cloud hosted IaaS, PaaS or SaaS environments, or have started preparing to do so.

"There is however, a sizeable minority that has yet to formulate a cloud migration strategy on any meaningful scale," said Chris Willcocks, Director: Cloud and Line of Business at SAP Africa.

"Compared to other global regions such as Western Europe, Africa's cloud adoption levels are only about half by comparison. This only serves to highlight the massive opportunity that exists on the continent for CSPs that are searching for potential new customers."

According to the IDG study, Africa might not match the rest of the world when it comes to cloud adoption, but the continent does mirror other regions of the world in its appraisal of the expected benefits of cloud computing.

Currently, fixed telecommunications infrastructure problems relating to the availability, reliability and security of wide area network and broadband links may be partly responsible for the relatively slow take up of cloud within Africa to date.

"Although the survey results paint a mixed picture for cloud service adoption in Africa, it does serve to illustrate the extent of the commercial opportunity for CSPs in this territory," Willcocks concluded.

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Source: AllAfrica

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