Microsoft, the third American company to surpass the $1 trillion market capitalization after Apple and Amazon, has launched the Africa Development Centre (ADC), with two initial sites in Nairobi, Kenya, and Lagos, Nigeria.

The development centre in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, was launched on May 14, while the launch event of the centre in Lagos, the commercial hub of Nigeria, will take place on Friday, May 17.

The hint of the ADC launch was dropped when Nigerian Developer Advocate, Christian "Codebest" Nwamba joined Microsoft as a Senior Cloud Developer Advocate in March. Codebeast told us that his job description include "growing the African Developer ecosystem through channels and resources provided by Microsoft."

With the launch of the ADC, the African developer ecosystem will be empowered to build innovative solutions on Microsoft platforms across numerous domains, including healthcare, agriculture, finance and human-centric automation. In the first five years of operation,  Microsoft will invest more than $100 million on the Lagos and Nairobi development centres.

What's in it for you?

You stand a chance of being one of the 100 full-time developers that will be hired by the end of the year, or the 500 full-time developers expected to be hired by 2023.

The developers recruited will work on artificial intelligence, cloud computing and mixed reality to devise cutting-edge solutions suitable for Kenya, Nigeria and the rest of the world. Apply on ADC's website.

Michael Fortin, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President and the Lead in establishing the engineering team at the Nairobi centre, said:

Our desire is to recruit exceptional engineering talents across the continent that will build innovative solutions for global impact. This also creates opportunities for engineers to do meaningful work from their home countries and be plugged into a global engineering and development organisation.

Through the ADC, Microsoft said it is partnering with local universities to create a modern intelligent edge and cloud computing curriculum unique to Africa.

The ADC will help us to better listen to our customers, develop solutions locally and scale for global impact. Beyond that, it is an opportunity to engage further with partners, academia, governments and developers driving impact in sectors important to the continent, such as Fintech, Agritech and Off-gird energy

Phil Spencer, Microsoft's Vice President of Gaming & Sponsor of ADC

Cloud computing boom in Africa

Cloud computing refers to the delivery of services over the internet. These services are broadly categorized into three, namely, Software as a Service (SaaS) such as Salesforce and G-Suite, Platform as a Service (PaaS) such as Amazon Web Services and Infrastructure as a Service such as Microsoft Azure.

Earlier in March, Huawei Cloud and Microsoft opened data centres in South Africa to enable them provide localized, safe and reliable cloud services across Africa. While Huawei plans to launch more data centres in Kenya, Nigeria and other African countries in the coming years, Amazon Web Services (AWS) will be making a debut in South Africa in the first half of 2020.