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Orange Expands Digital Footprint with New Innovation Hub in Guinea-Bissau

Orange Launches a Digital Centre in Tunisia’s Capital City
Orange Launches a Digital Centre in Tunisia’s Capital City via africabusinesscommunities.com
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Orange, the pan-African telecommunications operator, has unveiled its latest Orange Digital Center (ODC) in Guinea-Bissau. This new facility is part of Orange’s broader initiative to foster digital skills, promote innovation, and support local entrepreneurship across Africa.

The ODC in Guinea-Bissau is designed as a comprehensive ecosystem. It offers a range of free programs aimed at developing digital competencies among young people. The center’s primary focus is on enhancing employability and nurturing local entrepreneurial talent.

Within a single location, the ODC houses various facilities. These include a coding school for hands-on digital training, a ‘FabLab Solidaire’ for digital production and prototyping, and an ‘Orange Fab’ startup accelerator. The center also benefits from the backing of Orange Ventures Africa, the group’s investment fund dedicated to supporting promising startups.

Brelotte Ba, Deputy CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa, emphasized the transformative potential of the center. He described it as more than just a technology hub, but a catalyst for Guinea-Bissau’s digital future. Ba expressed hope that by providing free access to cutting-edge resources, the ODC would inspire a new generation of creators and leaders.

Sekou Dramé, CEO of Sonatel and chairman of Orange Bissau’s board, highlighted the significance of the ODC’s inauguration. He framed it as a crucial step in the Sonatel Group’s commitment to fostering innovation and digital inclusion in Guinea-Bissau. Orange Bissau operates as a subsidiary of the Sonatel Group, which is part of the larger Orange Group.

Thérèse Nogoye Tounkara, CEO of Orange Guinea Bissau, underscored the role of digital transformation in achieving sustainable development goals. She emphasized the significant impact that such initiatives can generate.

The Guinea-Bissau ODC is part of a growing network of 26 similar centers across Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. These centers are designed to support startups throughout their lifecycle, aiming to stimulate regional entrepreneurship and innovation.

Orange’s commitment to expanding its digital footprint in Africa extends beyond the ODC network. In May 2024, Orange Ventures partnered with Digital Africa to increase investments in tech startups across Africa and the Middle East through the Fuzé program.

This collaboration followed an earlier joint initiative in April. Orange, the European Union, and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) launched the “DigiGreen & Agri” project in Côte d’Ivoire. This project aims to promote digital transformation in the country’s agricultural sector.

These initiatives reflect Orange’s strategic focus on leveraging digital technology to drive economic growth and social development across Africa. By providing resources, training, and investment opportunities, Orange is positioning itself as a key player in the continent’s digital transformation journey.

The establishment of the ODC in Guinea-Bissau represents another step in Orange’s ongoing efforts to bridge the digital divide in Africa. It demonstrates the company’s commitment to fostering local talent and supporting the growth of a vibrant digital ecosystem across the continent.

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