As Africa transitions from the margins to the mainstream of the global economy, technology is playing an increasingly significant role. Bolstering regional trends in business, investment and modernization is the emergence of an IT ecosystem – a growing patchwork of entrepreneurs, tech ventures and innovation centres coalescing from country to country. Nigeria is a hotbed for start-up activity. Facebook, Netflix and SAP have recently expanded in Africa. And Silicon Valley investment is funnelling into ventures from South Africa to Kenya.
The rise of Silicon Savannah
Most discussions of the origins of Africa’s tech movement circle back to Kenya, which laid down four markers between 2007 and 2010 to inspire the country’s Silicon Savannah moniker: mobile money, a globally recognized crowdsourcing app, Africa’s tech incubator model, and a genuine government commitment to ICT policy.