Global networking and technology services firm Cisco said it will train an additional one million students in Africa by 2025 through its Network Academy (NetAcad) Program.
The company made the announcement at its Cisco Connect conference being held in South Africa this week.
A statement from the company reads: "During the next three years, Cisco will focus on training students. This will be followed by reskilling initiatives for active workforce and job seekers, based on content from Cisco NetAcad. Through NetAcad, Cisco intends to support the creation of Digital Learning Hubs in public libraries, accessible by the local population."
The company also said it plans to actively engage with employers to identify job opportunities that align to the skills of NetAcad students and alumni.
In April 2019, Cisco launched a talent bridge platform aimed at SMBs.
"Talent Bridge helps match supply, the skilled talent pool coming from NetAcad, with demand, that is entry-level jobs available in Cisco's partner ecosystem," the company stated.
SMB 'glocal' focus
During keynotes at the conference, Cisco stated its intention to launch a Repair Partner program through which it will work with select distributors to repair Cisco hardware, specifically to make technology available to SMBs.
It plans to use the investment in repair centres to contribute towards job creation, skills development, fight counterfeiting and promote its authorised channel.
Clayton Naidoo, General Manager for Cisco Sub-Saharan Africa, said, "Our goal is to create value through 'glocal' manufacturing and channel models. By glocal, we mean utilising global manufacturing practices with local execution."
In November 2018, Cisco opened the first Cisco EDGE Incubation Centre in Pretoria, South Africa.
In April 2019 the company unveiled a new hub in Durban, Kwa-Zulu Natal, soon after having launched its first East African hub in Kenya, hosted at the University of Nairobi.
"Since then, it has continued to expand the reach of EDGE, opening incubation centres in Dube Trade Port, KZN and the University of Nairobi in Kenya. In the coming months, Cisco plans to establish similar centres in Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana and Nigeria. There are plans for additional centres also in South Africa, including the Eastern Cape and Gauteng," the company added.