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Microsoft to shut Africa development centre in Nigeria

American tech giant, Microsoft is reportedly set to close down its Africa Development Center in Nigeria

Microsoft has announced closing down its Africa Development Centre in Nigeria, the continent's most populous nation. This will lead to job losses, an official said on Wednesday. The official added that the decision also had nothing to do with the country's economic condition.

"Microsoft has decided to close the Africa Development Centre in Nigeria. And as a result, some of our employees based in Nigeria will be impacted. We will continue to operate in Nigeria and we remain committed to Nigeria's transformation objectives. As such, we will continue to invest in our business and key growth areas in the region," the spokesperson said.
"Organizational and workforce adjustments are a necessary and regular part of managing our business. We will continue to prioritize and invest in strategic growth areas for our future and in support of our customers and partners, "he added.

In May 2019, Microsoft announced plans to establish the Africa Development Center (ADC) in Nigeria and Kenya, with the mission of creating innovative technology for Africa and the entire world.

Afterwards, there was a call for talented engineers to work on Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Mixed Reality, with the company committing to investing about $100 million in the first five years of operation.

Kings Towers

In March 2022, it launched the centre in Nigeria, citing it in a $70 million edifice in Ikoyi, Lagos, known as Kings Towers. By December of the same year, Microsoft President Brad Smith said Africa represented a burgeoning talent pool in contrast to declining population growth elsewhere. At that time, Microsoft had more than 200 engineers in Lagos and more than 500 in Nairobi, Kenya.

However, Microsoft's vision may have been disrupted by the sudden closure, which officials have vehemently refused to explain beyond "organizational and workforce adjustments ".