SENEGAL – Orange, Senegal’s dominant mobile telecommunication company has inaugurated its new concept of a place entirely dedicated to innovation, the “Orange Digital Center”.

The digital center located in Dakar is Orange’s second in the continent following the successful launch of a similar one in Tunisia.

The launch was attended by various personalities led by Ms Ndèye Tické Ndiaye Diop, Minister for the Digital Economy and Telecommunications and Mr Alioune Ndiaye, CEO of Orange Africa and Middle East.

Speaking during the launch, Sonatel’s CEO Sékou Dramé said, “I am very proud to open the second Orange Digital Center in Dakar, after the one in Tunis.”

“These new spaces are dedicated not only to students, young people with and without diplomas and young people changing career, but also to entrepreneurs reflecting the ambition to promote a strong and innovative digital economy for the country’s socio-economic development,” added Dramé.

The new digital center in Dakar has a surface area of 2,000 m² on six floors and will be the first of its kind in West Africa.

Working as a network, the digital centers allow experiences and expertise to be shared between countries and offer a simple and inclusive approach to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship and to support the local digital ecosystem.

The purpose of the Orange Digital Centers according to Orange is to bring together several strategic programmes under the same roof.

Some of the programmes to be supported by the digital center include coding school, Solidarity FabLab, Orange Fab and Orange Digital Ventures Africa; the Group’s investment fund.

All of the programmes provided are free-of-charge and include digital training for young people, startup acceleration, and guidance for project owners and investment in these projects.

“We are working in close collaboration with all the stakeholders, including governments and academics, to strengthen the employability of young Africans and to encourage them to run businesses and to innovate in their countries.” added Alioune Ndiaye, CEO of Orange Africa and the Middle East.

Orange hopes to open other centers by the end of the year in Jordan, Cameroon and Côte d’Ivoire, with yet more in 2020 in Morocco and Egypt.

Ultimately, similar centers will be deployed in all the countries within Orange’s footprint in Africa and the Middle East as well as in Europe.

Orange is present in 19 countries in Africa and the Middle East where it had 123 million customers on 30 June 2019. With sales revenue of €5.2 billion in 2018, this area is a strategic priority for the Group.