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New tech hub launched in Johannesburg

November 10, 2016 • Finance, Southern Africa, Startups, Top Stories

Sandra La Bella, Head of Technology Transformation & adoption and Chief Technology officer at Barclays Africa.

Sandra La Bella, Head of Technology Transformation & adoption and Chief Technology officer at Barclays Africa.

NGO Rhiza Babuyile together with the Barclays Africa Technology team, Experian SA and the Dutch Embassy unveiled the Orange Farm Buzz hub in Gauteng, South Africa. The second of its kind, the buzz hub hopes to equip Orange Farm residents with basic skills in information technology, end user computing and entrepreneurial capabilities.

The hub was opened by representatives from Rhiza Babuyile, Absa, Experian SA and the Dutch Embassy. Each company contributed to the existence of the hub.

With a wide presence accross Africa, Rhiza Babuyile hopes to achieve economic freedom among communities through the various initiatives.

“Life can become a lot more easier with the use of technology, it is important to improve the standard of life, he continued to say “ facilities like this can be used as training to teach people how to use technology and how it can benefit them” said Alef Meulenberg, Director at Rhiza Babuyile.

Attending the Orange buzz hub launch were entrepreneurs produced by the Diepsloot Jozi Business Hub. The entrepreneurs have managed to start businesses that offer IT solutions among other services.

Purple pages services offers a mobile cleaning services and has an online platform that offers personilised shopping. It is created by Diepsloot entrepreneurs Josephine Morake and Segonto Sebetwa. The start up has a mobile shopping app under way which will locate clients and enable them to submit their list of groceries and have them delivered on their door step.

“Clients can request shopping services via SMS, email or phone call, we shop on behalf of the client, you SMS a list of things that you want and we drop them on your door step”, said Josephine.

Diepsloot Kasi Hive founded in 2014 by Jessy Nkale, Lesiba Setumu and Sipho Ngobeni specialises in web development, web solutions and mobile applications. They develop IT solutions to challenges faced by the community. DKH has an argricultural app and a health app on the way.

“The agri app is 98 percent complete, its a digital market place for farmers that connects farmers it interlinks and connects farmers with the large market”,said Sipho

He added “The app is Android packaged, it will be released soon. We have mapped 250 small gardens within the community of Diepsloot which have been integrated into the app”.

As the use of technology in Africa continues to grow so should initiatives that promote the efficient use of technology. Sandra La Bella, Head of Technology Transformation & adoption and Chief Technology officer at Barclays Africa addressed the impact of digitization and technology, she said “by us enabling digitization whereby the communities can have banking on their phones that means through digitization you enable the people and communities to start having access and be independent financially to themselves”.

The Buzz hub will not only create entrepreneurs but it will also create employment for members of the community. Sandra explained how the hub will influence job creation and alleviate poverty, “This buzz hub enables a person to come in, think of an idea, start up a business and the buzz hub together with technology enables that person to create a business so they have enough money to start a family and employ more people in the communities which means those people can also start looking after their families, she said.

Staff Writer

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