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‘Nigeria to overtake SA to become Africa’s cloud computing powerhouse’


Nigeria is set to overtake South Africa to become the cloud computing powerhouse of the continent, according to research by Arthur Goldstuck of World Wide Worx.

Goldstuck, speaking at a Cisco briefing at the AfricaCom conference in Cape Town on Wednesday, explained that he has come to this conclusion owing to “dipstick” research done with 50 medium and large businesses in Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa regarding these countries’ cloud computing adoption.

A key finding of the research -- which is dubbed ‘Cloud in Africa: Reality check 2013’ -- includes that almost three quarters of companies in all these countries combined plan to use cloud computing next year.

In 2013, 50% of companies in South Africa have adopted cloud services, 48% in Kenya and just 36% in Nigeria, according to Goldstuck.

But a dramatic shift could occur in 2014 as 24% of companies in Kenya, 44% in Nigeria and just 16% in South Africa said they intend to use cloud computing services.

This means that in 2014 South Africa could hit a cloud computing usage rate of 66% while Kenya may rise to 72% and Nigeria to 80%.

Goldstuck attributed this potentially sharp rise in Kenya and Nigeria to a high level of confidence in cloud computing amid decreasing security fears.

Goldstuck added that 60% of companies in Kenya have confidence in cloud, 43% in Nigeria and 66% in South Africa. Those companies that are neutral about cloud computing number 22% in South Africa, 34% in Kenya and 52% in Nigeria.

Goldstuck emphasised that hardly any companies in these three countries are negative about cloud.

"Suddenly Nigeria becomes the cloud powerhouse of Africa," said Goldstuck in the briefing.

"I don't think we've ever seen such a dramatic shift in adoption of high level services in the African continent,” Goldstuck added.

Goldstuck told ITWeb Africa that factors driving this surging confidence in cloud in Nigeria and Kenya include a “massive appetite” for these services, a need to diminish a lack of access to technology, and addressing local storage problems in-country.

"Many companies see cloud as a solution to infrastructure challenges," explained Goldstuck.

Other findings of the research say that storage, software as a service (SaaS) and infrastructure as a service (IaaS) are the three categories of cloud that have the greatest usage in these three countries.

Moreover, private cloud usage dominates in South Africa and Kenya at respectively 32% and 44%, while hybrid computing is the second most popular form of cloud usage in these two countries.

Hybrid cloud usage, though, is the most popular in Nigeria at 44%,

Satisfaction of cloud services also ranks high among South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria. South Africa and Kenya scored 44% in terms of being ‘totally satisfied’ while Nigeria score 30%.

19% of all countries reported being ‘very satisfied’ with cloud computing, said Goldstuck.


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