Google opens first Google Developers Space in Lagos

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Ten Kenyan startups are among African SMEs that will benefit from the launch of the first Google Developers Space in Lagos, Nigeria. Previously referred to as the Google Launchpad Space, the Developers Space is a hub for African developers, entrepreneurs and startups.

Kenya’s Data Integrated, Elewa, Flexpay, Kwara and OkHi are some of the startups from nine African countries that attended the launch. Others were PayGo Energy, Pezesha, Tambua, Tulaa and WorkPay.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai, made a commitment to African entrepreneurs In July 2017, to start the Launchpad Accelerator Africa program and launch a space to house these efforts in Nigeria.

“Google is strengthening its commitment to supporting the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Africa by opening the Developers Space today. We have partnered with Impact Hub to bring the Space to life and worked with a local company called Space finish, which designed it specifically to create an environment that fosters collaboration and innovation. We’re looking forward to working with startups and other players in the ecosystem from across the continent at the Space,” says Launchpad Accelerator Africa head of Operations, Onajite Emerhor.

The technology giant does not charge for use of the space, which in addition to housing Google Launchpad Accelerator Africa will support developer meetups, training, experts office hours, Women in tech events, startup programs (outside of Launchpad), partner events that support the wider entrepreneur and developer ecosystem, as well as Google initiatives for empowering people through digital skills training.

Launchpad Accelerator Africa has worked with 47 startups since the first class kicked off in early 2018. These companies have raised millions of dollars in investments and created over nine hundred jobs across the continent. Launchpad Africa has accelerated startups from 17 African countries so far: Algeria, Botswana, Cameroon, Côte D’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. The next class will kick off at the Google Developer Space in May 2020.

“This space is the next step to our support for developers across the continent. From our commitment to train 100 000 developers across Africa and the launch of developer merchant support in the Google Play store, making it possible for developers to earn money through apps they build. We are excited to continue our journey with the African startup and developer communities,” says Juliet Ehimuan, Country Director, Google Nigeria.

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