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Andela Raises $40m to Connect Africa’s Engineering Talent into Global Technology Ecosystem

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Seni Sulyman of Andela with, Pule Taukobong and and Pardon Makumbe of CRE, with Andela team members

Andela, the company that builds high-performing engineering teams with Africa’s most talented software developers, has announced that the company has secured $40M in Series C funding.

 

The investment was led by Pan-African venture firm CRE Venture Capital with participation from DBL Partners, Amplo, Salesforce Ventures, and Africa-focused TLcom Capital.

 

Existing investors including Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, GV, and Spark Capital also participated. The round, which marks one of the largest investments ever led by an African venture firm into an Africa-based company, brings Andela’s total venture funding to just over $80M.

 

Andela was launched in 2014 to combat the global technical talent shortage by investing in Africa’s most talented software developers.

 

With an estimated 1.3M software jobs unfilled in 2016 in the U.S. alone, it’s clear that the growth of today’s major technology ecosystems is inhibited by a severe lack of talent.

 

To solve this, Andela invests in high potential pools of brainpower across the African continent to help more than 100 partner companies build distributed engineering teams.

 

These partners range from industry leaders like Viacom and Mastercard Labs to high-growth technology companies such as Gusto and GitHub.

 

With offices in Lagos, Nigeria, Nairobi, Kenya, and Kampala, Uganda, Andela has hired 500 developers to date — the top 0.7% of more than 70,000 applicants from across the continent.

 

Selected developers spend six months in a rigorous onboarding program before being matched with one of Andela’s partner companies as full-time engineering team members.

 

Beyond recruiting elite development talent, Andela is catalyzing the growth of tech ecosystems across the continent by open-sourcing its content and partnering with organizations including Google, Pluralsight and Udacity to provide resources and mentorship to developers.

 

“Andela is investing in our continent’s future technology leaders, who are already playing a much-needed role in solving both African and global problems,” said Seni Sulyman, Country Director of Andela Nigeria.

 

“With each new partnership, we are simultaneously proving to the global tech industry that brilliance is evenly distributed irrespective of gender, culture or nationality. As we unleash an entire generation of technologists, we will secure Africa’s role as an equal partner working alongside the rest of the world to advance human potential.”

 

Pule Taukobong, Founding Partner of CRE Venture Capital, addsed: “At present, there is more capital to fund ideas globally than there are people to build them. Andela is providing a solution to this global talent dilemma while building a business case for one of Africa’s greatest assets: our people.”

 

Andela will use the capital to fuel its aggressive expansion plans: The company aims to launch offices in two additional African countries over the next year, doubling its developer base from 500 to 1,000.

 

Alongside this round, Pule Taukobong of CRE, Julia Gillard, former Australian Prime Minister and Amplo Board Partner, and Omobola Johnson, Senior Partner at TLcom and former Minister of Communication Technology in Nigeria, will be joining Andela’s board.

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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E-Business

Go Rentals Targets Nigeria in African Operations Expansion Plan

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At its annual partner results event this week, Go Rentals CEO Evan Berger announced its 2018/19 expansion plans into Africa for its Technology Rental services.

“Our pilot expansion began in 2016/2017, fuelled by a multinational client’s need to train thousands of staff on SAP throughout Africa and Southern Africa, and was missing a cost-effective hardware solution.

The key driver for selecting Go Rentals for this project was reliability and our ability to handle complex logistics for moving IT hardware,” says Berger. “Working on the continent presents many challenges in import/export, technical skills, asset tracking, contingency planning, just to name a few challenges our innovations addressed.”

2017 saw the roll-out of projects in Namibia, Zambia, Angola and Lesotho in 2017, with infrastructure projects already completed in Botswana, Swaziland, Nigeria, Botswana, Mauritius, Madagascar, DRC, Ghana and Uganda.

“Through the partnerships established in these regions, we are now expanding broader operations,” says Managing Director Clayton Heldsinger.” The expansion at this stage focuses on providing IT infrastructure for large-scale training projects, elections, and other temporary infrastructure requirements.”

Temporary infrastructure projects are largely considered infeasible in many regions due to the lack of availability of stock, challenging logistics, high costs and availability of skills.

“Unlike service delivery to an office environment, where project delays are common, the number one factor to consider in a special infrastructure project like training or an election is that the event must happen on the given day,” says Heldsinger.

“The IT costs pale in comparison to the investment the client has made in venues, human resources, travel and accommodation costs and more. Our IT has to be ready, and we know how. ”

“Using our expertise, systems and blueprint developed in South Africa, we began doing the same in other countries throughout Africa, with remarkable success,” explains Berger.

Go Rentals has a winning formula for delivering temporary projects that require challenging logistics. These include mass training infrastructure, national elections, World Cup, temporary offices, rural installations and other projects.

If your corporation has a requirement for reliable infrastructure supply, delivery and support in Africa, contact Heldsinger or Ron Keschner, Sales Director at Go Rentals.

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IBM Study Unveils Hidden Costs of Data Breach

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IBM Security has released a global study examining the full financial impact of a data breach on a company’s bottom line.

The study found that hidden costs in data breaches — e.g., lost business, negative impact on reputation and employee time spent on recovery — can be a huge factor. In a “mega breach” of 1 million or more records, one-third of the cost derived from lost business.

And the cost is on the rise; since the 2017 report, the average cost of a data breach globally has increased 6.4 percent, to $3.86 million, according to IBM. The number of mega breaches is also up — from nine in 2013 to 16 in 2017.

The study, sponsored by IBM and conducted by Ponemon Institute, also reveals that:

– Average cost of a data breach involving 1 million records is nearly $40 million.

– Estimated cost of a breach involving 50 million records is $350 million.

– Average time to detect and contain a mega breach (365 days) is 99 days longer than for a smaller-scale breach.

– In a mega breach, the greatest cost is from lost business, estimated at nearly $118 million for a breach of 50 million records.

A major factor in lost business cost is customer turnover — a recent IBM/Harris poll found that 75 percent of consumers in the U.S. say that they will not do business with companies that they do not trust to protect their data.

“The truth is there are many hidden expenses which must be taken into account, such as reputational damage, customer turnover, and operational costs,” said Wendi Whitmore, global lead for IBM X-Force incident response and intelligence services. “Knowing where the costs lie and how to reduce them can help companies invest their resources more strategically and lower the huge financial risks at stake.”

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Global Accelerex Trains Nigerian Security Agencies on Cyber Crime

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Global Accelerex Limited, a Central Bank of Nigeria-licenced Payment Terminal Service Provider and Payment Solution Service Provider, as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility Program, is set to train members of Nigeria’s Security Agencies on Cybercrime.

The event, which will hold on July 25, 2018 at Ladi Kwali Conference Center, Sheraton Hotel, Abuja, will enrich participants’ knowledge of the cyberspace and increase their versatility in dealing with on-line crime.

This collaboration, first of its kind in the e-payment industry, is borne out of the company’s desire to rid the nation of cyber criminals who continue to bring the country’s name into disrepute.

In addition to learning about cyber vulnerability, attendees will also learn about insider threats and sophisticated cyber adversaries.

The forum will host more than 30 participants including officials of the Nigerian Police, Nigerian Armed Forces, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, State Security Service, National Intelligence Agency and National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.

Others are Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, Defence Intelligence Agency and Nigerian Custom Service.

“We applaud the effort of the Nigerian government in combating cybercrime and securing lives and property in the country. Global Accelerex is driven to compliment this effort to ensure that Nigeria is rid of these miscreants so that citizens can enjoy the cyberspace with the peace of mind they deserve.

It is absolutely critical that we support security operations so that Nigerians can use the internet freely, which is why this training is vital”, stated Stanley Peters, Chief Technology Officer of the company.

The National Security Adviser commends the initiative by Global Accelerex, saying that the move will definitely impact positively on the officers and the nation in general.

He added that continuous training is critical to stay ahead of criminals even as he revealed that attendees have shown a high level of enthusiasm at this unique opportunity.

Keynote speakers that will bring their experience to bear are Mr. Tahmeed Rab, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Kaizen Solutions Group, Baltimore, USA and Mr. Peter Obadare, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Digital Encode.

Both experts are acclaimed for their ground-breaking achievements in cyber security, risk and compliance, mobile forensics, network and system consulting.

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