The pan-African telecom company, MTN Group, and Huawei Technologies have collaborated to build a technology innovation lab aimed at accelerating digital transformation and sustainable development across Africa.

According to a statement released by MTN on Wednesday, the lab sited at the company’s headquarters in South Africa is poised to be a catalyst for digital progress in Africa.

By fostering cross-regional collaboration, it will stimulate the African digital ecosystem and promote the rapid development, deployment, and adoption of cutting-edge innovative solutions, the company added.

MTN noted that the lab would play a crucial role in its evolution, moving beyond the traditional telecommunications operator role to become a leading provider of comprehensive technology services.

“Research and development within the lab will concentrate on vital areas including 5G and 5G-A technologies, artificial intelligence, big data analytics, cloud computing, FTTH, automation, and digital financial services – all catalysts for Africa’s digital future,” MTN stated.

What they are saying

Speaking on the impacts the lab is expected to have on the continent, the President and Chief Executive Officer of MTN Group, Ralph Mupita, said:

“This lab further demonstrates our commitment to developing relevant, sustainable, and transformative solutions designed specifically for the African context and signifies a strategic investment in Africa’s future – It’s about solutions born in Africa, for Africa.

It will catalyze the growth of the digital economy, fostering innovation and generating long-lasting opportunities to empower communities and advance the continent’s development.”

Mazen Mroué, Chief Technology and Information Officer at MTN Group emphasized during the inauguration of the project that the lab is more than just a hub for tech, but a platform for collaboration, demonstrating our technology capabilities resulting from the continuous investment made by MTN during the last 30 years.

“It is a space where the best minds can come together, share ideas, and push the boundaries of what’s possible. By working closely, we can leverage each other’s strengths and the collective brilliance of Africa’s innovators to create solutions that will transform lives. This collaborative spirit is what will unlock the true potential of this lab,” he said.

Also commenting on the lab and the collaboration with MTN, the President of Huawei’s Wireless Solutions, Cao Ming, stated:

“We will collaborate with MTN to create leading products and solutions for the African market, and together explore new business models to lead the industry forward.

“We believe that the establishment of the innovation lab will accelerate the development of Africa’s digital economy and build a more prosperous and sustainable African continent.”

The technology innovation lab is expected to serve as a hub for experimentation, demonstration, and skill-building. MTN disclosed that the lab is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and resources designed to support cutting-edge research and development initiatives.

According to MTN, the lab is open to MTNers, partners, and other stakeholders based on prior reservations to access the facility.


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