Microsoft and SITA Launch New Innovation Center in South Africa

Microsoft and SITA (the State Information Technology Agency) have partnered to launch the Microsoft SITA Ndivho Innovation Centre in Centurion, South Africa.

The establishment of the new center forms part of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between SITA and Microsoft South Africa in October 2019, aimed at accelerating the digital transformation of government services in the country through the adoption of public cloud services.

“Partnering with SITA and investing in the center and other initiatives is a vital part of Microsoft’s commitment to leverage cloud and emerging technologies to accelerate growth through innovation, work across sectors to better serve citizens’ needs, empower individuals and SMMEs with critical future-ready skills, and create broader societal impact,” said Lillian Barnard, chief executive officer at Microsoft South Africa.

“Microsoft fully supports SITA’s vision to digitize government to accelerate and enhance innovation and service delivery as part of our shared commitment to driving competitiveness, skills development and economic growth in the country – and the launch of the Ndivho Innovation Centre is an important step in reaching this goal.”

The services and benefits of this partnership will be enabled predominantly through Microsoft Cloud-enabled solutions in the areas of Critical Infrastructure, Public Safety & Justice, Defense and Intelligence & Life Sciences.

“Having a space dedicated to collaboration, digital innovation, skills development and capacity building provides a unique opportunity to create new services for government departments and customers. The centre will also help to unlock IT and organisational productivity and efficiencies in service delivery that will deliver inclusive growth for the country and better enable economic recovery,” said Mr. Luvuyo Keyise, interim Managing Director at SITA.

Additionally, the center is not limited to Microsoft technologies and provides an innovation platform for Government’s technology investments. The center also aims to spur innovation and global competitiveness, as well as build the ICT capability and skills development, of local, provincial and government departments.

Microsoft also recently released its latest Responsible AI Standard, a framework that is designed to guide developers on how to responsibly build AI systems.